My Ear Piercing Is Infected, What Should I Do Now?

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Piercing is considered as a fashion amongst youngsters from past few years. Be it ear piercing or nose piercing, it has been popular in a specific age group. Piercings require a special type of care but all we are concerned about is how it is done. Consequently, many of us end up giving up on our favourite piercings just because they got too infected.

The Ear Piercing Anatomy

Ear piercing or any type of piercing is an open wound just like any other wound but the difference is we leave the wound of ear piercing open and uncovered. The recovery time for other wounds is up to 3 weeks but for ear piercing, it takes six to eight weeks to heal. Piercings done on the harder parts of your ear, also known as a cartilage piercing generally take longer to heal and can be more prone to infection. Moreover, there can be various other ways in which your ear piercing can get infected.

The bacteria, of any type, if left around that area can turn into an infection very quickly. Touching your piercing with dirty hands or instruments can cause serious infection. If the earrings are on too tightly, not allowing room for the wound to breathe and heal, an infection can develop. A piercing can also get infected if there’s too much handling of the piercing or the post of the earring is rough.

How Can I Know I’ve Got Infection In My Ear Piercing?

Ear infection specially the one in ear piercing, can be very irritating and also can last too long if not attended. To identify if you have got infection in your piecing or not, here are a few symptoms you should be looking out for:

  • If you are having a yellow, pus-like discharge
  • There’s swelling in your ear
  • Redness around the pieced area
  • You suffer from pain or tenderness
  • Itching and burning in the piercing

If that is the condition you’re experiencing, do not worry as minor infections of an ear piercing can be treated at home.

But if you start experiencing the following symptoms, seek medical attention:

  • If your earring isn’t moving.
  • The earring is getting embedded in your skin
  • Infection in the piercing is not improving with the home remedies
  • You start experiencing a fever
  • Not only the piercing site, but other parts of your skin are also infected

Treatment For Ear Piercing Infection

The infection, as long as it is minor, can be treated at home. The infections in piercings are very hard to treat as they may require antibiotics if the infection gets out of hand. If these infections are not attended properly, you might end up in the hospital as it becomes a serious case.

To prevent yourself from infections or to take care of them at home, read the following tips:

  1. If you are going to touch your piercing, wash your hands and clean them thoroughly
  2. Use salt water to clean around your piercing area. Do it for two to three times per day. Combine 1/4 tsp. of salt with 8 oz. of distilled water.
  3. Using alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or antibiotic ointments can further irritate the skin
  4. Don’t remove the piercing, this will close up the hole and trap the piercing in the infection
  5. After you think the piercing has been cleared from infection, you will have to continue your cleaning regimen twice a day until the piercing is totally healed.

Ear Piercing And How To Prevent Infection In It

If you want to avoid infection, try to get your piercing done by a professional.

Before getting your ear pierced:

  • Make sure their tools are sterilized
  • Ask them about the earrings they use, if they come out of a new, sterile package.
  • Clean your ears twice a day with the rinse provided or sterile saline.

Do not experiment with your piercing as it can cause severe infection and also, avoid handling or playing with the jewelry.

Consult An ENT Specialist

If you are suffering from an infection in ear piercing or any other infection in your ears, throat, or nose, immediately consult an ENT specialist. Doctors nowadays do not pay proper attention to their patients. To avoid that behavior, consult an ENT specialist through Marham as it’ll make us responsible to get you a proper consultation.

You can ask a free question from a doctor through the Marham forum and book an in-person consultation. Moreover, you can also get yourself an online appointment booked through Marham’s mobile app.

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Javeria Adil Chughtai

Javeria Adil Chughtai

A journalist and a medical researcher by profession, badminton player and photographer by passion. You can call me an artist but No, I can't draw you! 😀

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