Many newbies know of a common advice for new piercings: once you get pierced, you should twist your jewelry. The twisting is advised as a measure against jewelry getting stuck. This advice is usually given by inexperienced workers at malls and other people who are not really knowledgeable about piercings.
In short: this is a bad advice. It is a horrible advice.
You should NOT twist or rotate your jewelry during the healing time.
The Dangers of Twisting
Twisting your jewelry or manipulating your jewelry during the healing time can bring numerous other problems. Keep in mind that a new piercing is basically a fresh wound, and you don’t want to disturb it or cause a health problem.
Twisting or otherwise playing with your jewelry will only cause the bacteria and crusts to go inside of your new piercing. Since this area is freshly pierced, it is very sensitive and can get infected easily.
During the healing process, especially in the first days after getting pierced, it’s vital to keep your piercing clean. You need to follow the aftercare instructions carefully and to clean your piercing regularly with a saline solution or a specialized liquid made for this purpose.
Twisting and touching your jewelry only invites bacteria to the pierced area. Instead of being clean, a new piercing gets dirty. It opens the door to infections and other problems.
Another risk is that by manipulating your jewelry you will destroy the fistula. A fistula has to form inside a new piercing during the healing time. It is how a piercing heals properly. By destroying the fistula you are only prolonging the healing time. You are also at danger of developing excess scar tissue.
In short: jewelry should never be twisted or manipulated, especially in the first days after getting pierced.
What if Gets Stuck?
Many people worry that if they don’t twist their jewelry, it will get stuck inside the piercing. This is, for the most part, a myth. While jewelry might appear tight, once the swelling is gone it is typically easy to move it inside the piercing – which still doesn’t mean you should move it or manipulate it during the healing process.
Furthermore, the cleaning process will usually prevent jewelry from becoming stuck. The liquids you use to clean your new piercing will not only clean the area but also remove any excess bits that might make jewelry to get stuck. Cleaning provides temporary wetness to the area, which also contributes to removal of any unnecessary bits that might make jewelry to get stuck.
In short: you should not worry about it and you should never twist or rotate your new jewelry.
In case the jewelry does become stuck, instead of trying to pull it out or twist it, go to your piercer. They will help you unblock your piercing or, in more serious circumstances, they will remove the jewelry for you.
If you notice any infection or if the pain persists, you should go directly to your doctor. Any medical concern should be treated immediately. It’s better to retire a new piercing and then try again once it’s healed than to cause health problems and possible complications.