When deciding on a cartilage piercing you wish to get, it’s important to take both positive and negative aspects of this piercing type. While ear cartilage piercings are very beautiful and rewarding, it’s important to know how to take a proper care of them.
What to Consider
Ear cartilage is very sensitive and can be damaged easily. For this reason, all cartilage piercings should be performed with caution. Choosing the right piercer is essential. You want someone who is familiar with this type of piercing and someone who will know how to perform the procedure in a correct manner. Needless to say, you will need to choose a good, reliable piercing studio to get your ear cartilage piercing.
Keep in mind that while they don’t seem complex, ear cartilage piercings are trickier than they may look. While they are not among the most complicated piercings, they require someone who is familiar with this exact type of piercing. They are a bit more complex than they seem, so it’s something to keep in mind.
It all comes from the fact ear cartilage is extremely sensitive and can break easily. If done incorrectly, ear cartilage piercing can lead to numerous health problems. The cartilage may break and “melt” – meaning, you can lose part of your ear. In the more extreme cases, reconstructive surgery has to be performed to save the ear.
If this sounds too scary, don’t worry. Ear cartilage piercing is not dangerous if done by a knowledgeable, experienced professional and if you follow all recommended aftercare instructions. In these cases, chances are that your ear cartilage piercing will heal nicely and that you will enjoy it for years to come.
Problems and Solutions
Here are some common ear cartilage piercing problems and how to solve them:
- Complicated procedure. While the procedure itself is not so complex, it should be done with great consideration. Piercing cartilage is not the same as tissue piercing. All reputable piercers are aware of this. Solution to this problem is easy: always get pierced at a reliable piercing studio and by a knowledgeable professional.
- Pain. Ear cartilage piercings are surprisingly painful. While they are not as painful as certain types of male and female genital piercings or nipple piercings, they do hurt more than what people expect. The solution? Be informed. While ear cartilage piercings tend to be painful, the pain is not unbearable. Also, the procedure itself is not so painful – it’s that your ear becomes very sensitive afterwards.
- Infections. Infections are dangerous for all new piercings, but with ear cartilage piercing it gets even trickier, because an infection can spread very quickly and damage your ear. The solution to this problem is to get pierced by a reliable piercer and to follow all the recommended aftercare instructions. Don’t forget to clean your piercing regularly with a saline solution or a specialized piercing cleaning product.
- Discomfort. Ear cartilage piercings tend to cause discomfort during the initial stages of healing. This is normal. You may use some painkiller if your ear is too sensitive after the procedure. However, if the pain and discomfort persist, you should consult your doctor to make sure there’s no infection underway.
- Soft bump on the back of the ear. These soft bumps sometimes form around cartilage piercings. They are not so dangerous, provided that they disappear quickly. The bumps usually form when you change your jewelry. To minimize this problem and risks associated with it, always use only well-crafted ear jewelry made from body-friendly materials. Never buy cheap jewelry at a mall – it’s a recipe for a disaster!
- Long healing time. Ear cartilage piercing takes a long time to heal. There is no way around this. You need to give it that time and to perform cleaning routine every day. While your piercing may look fine after a few weeks, keep in mind that cartilage piercing takes between 3 and 6 months to fully heal. Don’t stop your cleaning routine just because your ear is not sore few weeks after getting the piercing done. Just keep the aftercare routine and your cartilage piercing will heal nicely!
- Observe your piercing to notice early signs of infection, migration or rejection.
- During the healing time don’t wear large headphones and try not to sleep on the side where the new piercing is located.
- Be careful: ear cartilage jewelry can easily be caught on clothes or hair. Be careful when changing clothes and keep your hair away from your ear during the initial healing time.
- Since special care has to be made during the healing process, it’s advisable to only get one cartilage piercing at a time.
- Stay away from cheap jewelry made of unsafe materials. Many cheap gold jewelry pieces are made with nickel, which can cause serious allergies. Always buy your jewelry from a reputable store and made of body-friendly materials.