Fever Chills Or Upset Stomach
Ear piercing infections can present themselves as fever, chills, or an upset stomach. In this case, we would recommend seeing a doctor especially if youre experiencing other signs of infection or if your piercing is still in the healing process. Make sure to tell your doctor that you have a new piercing so they can determine whether or not this is the cause.
Is it infected?
These symptoms are pretty common outside of piercing infections. So there is a possibility that the timing is merely a coincidence. Consider your recent eating habits and any contact with sick people.
Regardless of whether the infection is piercing related, its worth a trip to your health provider if the symptoms persist. Nobody likes being sick.
Why Cartilage Infections Are Harder To Treat
So if someone comes into the ER and theyve got ear pain and ear swelling, and then I push on the bones behind the ear, kind of at the base of the skull there, and theyre really tender there, that can be a very serious thing too. And that, typically, requires IV antibiotics, sometimes even surgery.
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Poor And Unhygienic Procedures
The first and most common cause of infections is the use of unsterilized equipment and poor procedures i.e. unsterilized needle, gun and other equipment. There has been reports of cluster of infections caused by the Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria in Oregon, US. This bacterial infection have been attributed to the piercing kiosk using poor procedures that led to multiple people getting infected at the same time .
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Causes And Risk Factors
It is important to be extra careful when handling a new piercing. If bacteria get into a newpiercing, it can cause infection. Other causes include:
- Removing the earrings before the piercing heals
- Touching the ears with dirty hands
- Putting your head in a pool, river, lake, or hot tub before the piercing is healed
- Forgetting to clean the new piercings twice daily as recommended by a professional
- Getting the ears pierced with equipment that is not sterilized or in a place that is not properly cleaned or set up for ear piercing
Is My Ear Piercing Infected
By chronicon February 21, 2018
Is my ear piercing infected? Its a question every piercing studio is familiar with. Identifying an infection is often difficult, especially if its your first piercing. Many of the symptoms of an infection are similar to the side effects of a new piercing.
Put your mind and ears at ease with this handy guide. We take a look at:
- How to identify infection
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When To See A Doctor
If you experience any of the following symptoms, contact your doctor:
- Pain and swelling in the cartilage or earlobe
- Discharge or yellow pus from the area of the piercing
- Fever or chills
- The area of the piercing is red and swollen
- The earring or clasp is embedded in the ear or stuck in the earlobe
- Swelling and redness has spread beyond the area of the earring
How Do I Treat An Infected Ear Piercing
An infected ear piercing can be painful and can become extremely problematic if not treated correctly and promptly. If you suspect an infection, the area should be gently but thoroughly washed with a mild antibacterial soap and soaked with a warm saline solution. An over-the-counter antibacterial ointment should also be applied. If the infected piercing does not improve within three days, gets worse, or if you begin to run a fever, you should see your doctor immediately. Sometimes, an infection in the ear requires prescription antibiotics.
When washing an infected ear piercing, make sure you use a mild antibacterial hand soap. Before washing, carefully remove the earring, and using a soft cloth or tissue, squeeze the area slightly to clear away any puss or discharge that might be present. Work up a good lather on a soft washcloth, and gently clean the area, rinsing it thoroughly when done. This should be done twice a day.
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Age For Piercing Ears
- Parents often wonder what a good age is to have ear piercing done. It is best to wait until a child can play an active role. Most often, this is past age 8.
- Children under 4 years may touch the earrings a lot. Playing with the earring with dirty hands can lead to infections.
- Younger children also can get the earrings out and put them in their mouth. This can lead to swallowing or choking on them.
Is My Piercing Irritated
How can you tell if your piercing is infected? According to Thompson, the telltale signs of an infection are simple: “The area around the piercing is warm to the touch, you notice extreme redness or red streaks protruding from it, and it has discolored pus, normally with a green or brown tint,” Thompson says.
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Which Season Is Best For Getting Piercings Done
Frankly, as per what experts both jewelry and medical science ones say, there is really no best season for getting piercing done. Weigh the benefits and pitfalls of all seasons and see whatever works or does not work for your specific case. Also, ensuring that you take good care of your piercings and maintain a general hygiene around them goes a long way towards effective healing. This includes cleaning the piercings with seasalt water, using moisturizer , minimal touching or fiddling, amongst others.
My Cartilage Piercing Is Infected Causes
According to Dr. Axe, cartilage piercing infection is primarily caused by microorganisms of the Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus Aureus. It is normal for many people to experience the symptoms after they have had their cartilages pierced, but it is also normal for the infection to occur during the piercing process.
So what causes an infection to occur?
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Does Cold Weather Effect Piercings
Indeed, the cold weather effects piercings in more ways than one. The reduced blood flow in the body, which sets in when the outside temperature drops, is detrimental to the healing of the pierced wound. Additionally, the cold weather brings in moisture loss and resultant drying up of the skin, which can be stalling for the healing of fresh piercings. However, cold weather will bring respite to swelling and bloating of the piercing wounds.
The Upside Winters ,or cold weather in general, are characterised by drop in temperatures, which means a lower volume of blood flows in and out of the region around the wound. What this translates into is a lower swelling of the wound from the inside. Winters also witness reduced chances of infections to the wounds, which may be caused by sweat and perspiration.
The Downside- Winters are characterised by drop in temperatures, which means a lower volume of blood flows in and out of the region around the wound. What this translates into is a lower swelling of the wound from the inside. Winters also witness reduced chances of infections to the wounds, which may be caused by sweat and perspiration.
Another problem for piercings which sprout with winters setting in is to do with the common cold becoming all the more common. There are two issues which the common cold poses for piercings, especially the ones on the nose.
1. MUCUS BUILD-UP
2. THE ENGAGED IMMUNE SYSTEM
Significant Swelling And Redness
Does the site of your childs ear piercing look significantly puffier than normal? That could be a red flag for a potential infection.
Some swelling is to be expected following the trauma of an ear piercing. However, if your childs ear appears significantly large, red, and warm to the touch, it could mean that an infection is brewing.
Inflammation shouldnt last longer than a week and should be considered abnormal if it persists beyond that. If major swelling and redness havent subsided within a few days of the piercing, contact your childs doctor.
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Signs Of An Infection
- Breathing difficulties
- Swollen mouth and tongue that blocks the airway
No matter where you were pierced, there is a risk of infection, hepatitis B or C, and tetanus. You may also develop a nasal staph infection if the jewelry is pierced through the hard nasal cartilage instead of the softer, fleshy part of the septum.
“Some sites are more prone to infection than others. For example, high-rim ear piercings in the cartilage lead to infections more often than ear lobe piercings because they don’t have as much blood flow,” says Shannahan.
Saline Cleaning And Warm Water
The best way to take care of a cartilage piercing is by properly cleaning the area. You can go about this process by using warm water once you have taken a shower using hair shampoo.
Warm water is vital as it helps in relieving the pain caused by the piercing, while at the same time relieving any swelling that could be present.
Additionally, cleaning will also play an important role in promoting healing, as it will discourage microbes from accumulating on the surface near the piercing.
Using a saline solution to perform the cleaning will also guarantee better relief, especially when this piercing hurts. Saline solutions have also been known to help in accelerating the healing process of the piercing.
However, it is imperative to note that there are cleaning solutions which can cause terrible results when used on new or piercings that are just starting to heal.
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Ear Piercing Infection Treatment & Bumps
How do you treat an infected pierced ear? Treatment will rely on information based on ear piercing symptoms. For instance, are the infection symptoms severe or minor? Is treatment targeting an adult or child? We shall focus on treatments provided by health centers and then how to treat pierced ear infections with home remedies.
Salt Or Chamomile Soaks
A salt or chamomile soak serves a dual purpose. For one, it relieves the swelling, redness, and pain. Secondly, it helps to clean the infected piercing. A salt soak is generally more effective, but chamomile is better for sensitive skin. You can do as many chamomile soaks per day as desired, but only 2 salt soaks are recommended per day.
How to make a soak:
- Boil 1 cup of water
- Add ¼ teaspoon of sea salt and stir until dissolved OR brew 1 chamomile tea bag
- Perform a salt soak by dipping a cotton pad into the solution and appling to the infection for 2 minutes
- For a chamomile soak, dip a cotton pad into the solution, or use the tea bag, and apply to the infection until it cools.
For both, you want to use hot water, but let it cool down enough that you wont hurt or damage your skin before dipping the cotton pad.
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What Are Ear Infection Symptoms
If youve never had an earring hole infection before, you may not be familiar with the warning signs and symptoms, but theyre pretty straightforward. Warm, itchy, tender ears are a telltale sign of an infection, and your ears will also likely look red and a bit swollen.
Think of the four Ps: pain, pus, plumpness and pinkness
This usually would be accompanied by some sort of cut or scab on the ear, but not always, said Dr. Joshua Zeichner, director of cosmetic and clinical research at Mount Sinai Hospital’s department of dermatology.
Some earring hole infections may also be accompanied by an oozy discharge, but not all ear discharge is cause for alarm. In fact, ears sometimes secrete a white to yellow thin liquid while healing from a piercing, and sebum from your oil glands can also collect on your piercings. If your discharge is light in color and not accompanied by pain, redness, warmth or swelling, it is probably not infected, Shah said.
An easy way to self-diagnose your infection? Fusco encourages patients to think of “the four Ps”: pain, pus, plumpness and pinkness. All indicate possible infection, she said.
The good news? Minor earring hole infections will typically only last a few days, and you can usually nip them in the bud with a few home remedies. If your situation doesnt improve in a few days, though, you may need to call in backup. Untreated infection could lead to more complicated infections that require drainage and oral antibiotics, Fusco said.
This Is *exactly* What To Do & What To Avoid If Your Ear Piercing Gets Infected
Sure, ear piercings come with a certain level of discomfort , but as a professional piercer once told me: The puncture step is only the first part of the battle the after care is where the real work begins. Case in point? Infected ear piercings.
Theyre totally commonan ear piercing is an open wound, after all, and the site can be pretty temperamental as it healsbut you can treat a mild case at home. If you wake up to a throbbing, itchy, or, uh, crusty ear, check out these expert dos and donts to heal the area safely. Youll be showing off your ear candy in no time.
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Contact Your Healthcare Provider If:
- You have a fever.
- You feel a bump at the piercing site.
- Your earlobe feels warmer or more itchy than usual.
- Your earlobe is painful, red, or swollen. You may have yellow, smelly discharge from the piercing site.
- You cannot see your earring because your earlobe covers it up.
- Your earring is pulled out and rips your earlobe.
The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.
How To Treat Infected Ear Piercings: A Dermatologist Explains
When you have an infected piercing, your first thought might be to take your jewelry out. While that might seem like the best thing to do, its best to leave this to your doctor. If your piercing is actually infected, and you remove the jewelry on your own, the bacteria and pus can get locked inside if the hole closes up. Instead, see a dermatologist, who will likely swab the area for a culture and start a course of topical and/or oral antibiotics to treat the infected skin piercing. Your derm will likely also want to monitor the area for potential abscess formation throughout your treatment plan. To learn more, we spoke to two dermatologists, Y. Claire Chang, and Alicia Zalka.
Meet the Expert
- Y. Claire Chang, MD, is a board-certified cosmetic dermatologist at Union Square Laser Dermatology in Manhattan.
- Alicia Zalka, MD, is a board-certified dermatologist and an Assistant Clinical Professor of Dermatology at Yale. She also is the founder of Surface Deep.
Mild infections can be treated easily enough at home. If its just a little irritated, slightly red or warm, you can try a few things to clear it up on your own:
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How Can I Prevent An Ear Piercing Infection
A huge factor is choosing a piercing shop thats sanitary. In general, the more experience someone has in doing piercingswith a reputation for good resultsthe better the odds of a favorable outcome, Dr. Kaplan says. Read reviews on the shop and on your piercer beforehand if you can find any. And if you go into a piercing shop and it seems like its not clean or you just dont get a good vibe, go someplace else.
The spot on your ear that you choose to pierce matters, too. No physician will ever recommend piercing the cartilage of the ear, Dr. Kaplan says. Of course, that’s never stopped anyone. That’s why following your after-care instructions if so crucial, even after it seems like your piercing is all healed up. Not strictly adhering to the post-piercing care instructions would increase the odds of infection, Dr. Kaplan says.
What Piercing Gets Infected The Easiest
Of all the body sites commonly pierced, the navel is the most likely to become infected because of its shape. Infections can often be treated with good skin hygiene and antibiotic medications.
Most commonly, an infected ear piercing is caused , which can happen in several ways. Handling with unclean hands. If you clean your ears without washing your hands first, you run the risk of exposing your piercings to bacteria. Not cleaning the piercing enough.
A cartilage piercing creates an open wound. As it heals, it may look swollen, lumpy, or like a bump. In the days immediately following a cartilage piercing, the body’s immune system triggers inflammation and swelling to heal the wound, sometimes leading to a cartilage bump.
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Treating The Infection At Home
As long as your infection is minor, you may be able to take care of it at home. If youve had a cartilage piercing and it seems infected, seek medical treatment. These types of infections are harder to treat and may require oral antibiotics. Significant infections of the cartilage can require hospitalization.
Follow these steps to take care of a minor piercing infection:
After the infection appears to have cleared, continue this cleaning regimen twice a day until the piercing is totally healed. Remember, an earlobe piercing can take six to eight weeks to heal. Routine care is important during that time.
Usually, a minor infection of an ear piercing can be treated successfully at home. But if any of the following symptoms occur, seek medical attention:
- The earring doesnt move.
- The earring clasp becomes embedded in your skin.
- The infection doesnt improve with home treatment within two days.
- You develop a fever.