Receiving a piercing is essentially creating an intentional opening in your skin on part of your body. So, it requires just as much care and attention to heal as an accidental wound.
Both are susceptible to contracting infections and must therefore be taken proper care of to prevent infections.
Aside from saline mixtures, many piercing experts advise their customers to consider a sea salt soak such as Himalayan salt, to promote healing and maintain cleanliness. However, this process must be done properly to avoid risking infections.
Can you use pink Himalayan salt for piercings?
Although pink Himalayan salt is not sea salt, it can be used as rock salt to keep the piercing area clean and prevent infections. 1/4th tbsp of the pink salt dissolved in a cup of pre-boiled warm water is advised to create this saline solution. Too much salt may irritate the piercing.
A common aftercare product for new nose piercings is a sea salt soak. Since pink Himalayan salt is technically a sea salt, despite being found only near the Himalayan mountains, it is suggested by many to use it as a soak during the healing process.
It is typically advised to do a soak two times a day for the entire healing process of the nose piercing. Most professionals agree that a store-bought spray or soak is the best method of ensuring you are using the correct salt to water ratio.
This ratio is vital because the wrong amount of salt can cause irritation and swell around the piercing. For a DIY salt soak, use an eighth of a tablespoon of the salt for half a cup of water. Make sure it dissolves completely.
Pink Himalayan salt is widely used as an aftercare product for most piercings including nipple piercings.
As nipple piercings take a long time to fully heal, typically between 9 to 12 months, a Himalayan Sea salt soak will help promote faster healing and prevent the growth of bacteria that may lead to infections.
A salt soak will also help keep the area clean. To create a homemade soak, simply use the standard measurement of an eighth of a tablespoon of the salt, fully dissolved in half a cup of water.
It is advised to wash the nipple with warm water as hot water may irritate and cause reddening of the piercing.
The optimal way of promoting healing in your tongue piercing is to rinse your mouth with a medical-grade oral rinse. This should be done for at least 30 seconds and repeated after every meal during the healing process.
For tongue piercings, the healing process ranges from 3 to 6 weeks. Along with the oral rinse, a sea salt soak may be used to accelerate healing and keep the piercing clean.
To create a homemade Himalayan Sea salt soak, first, fill a disposable cup with 8 ounces of water and one-fourth of a teaspoon of the salt.
Make sure that the water is warm for optimum benefit, and that the salt is completely dissolved. Lastly, rinse your mouth with this solution for 15 seconds.
What happens if you use Himalayan salt on a piercing?
The following aspects can happen if you use Himalayan salt on a piercing –
Since pink Himalayan salt contains traces of more beneficial minerals than other types of sea salt, it is the most commonly used sea salt for piercings. In addition, Himalayan salt is a non-iodized salt meaning it contains little to no amounts of iodine in its composition.
Since using products containing iodine for piercings is strongly advised against by professionals, Himalayan Sea salt is a great alternative to other varieties of salts that generally contain some amounts of iodine and other harmful chemicals.
These traits help accelerate the healing of the new piercing and keep the area clean during the entire process.
Keeps piercing clean:
Maintaining cleanliness and hygiene is vital to the healing process of any piercing, regardless of location on the body. For example, it is crucial to clean a cartilage piercing for the duration of the healing process to prevent necrosis.
Necrosis is an infection leading to tissue loss in that area. It is common in nose piercings due to the mucus inside that may attract the staphylococcus bacteria.
This is where sea salt soaks or rinse helps minimize bacteria and keeps the wound clean. The beneficial minerals of Himalayan Sea salt also aid in reducing inflammation around the area and gently removing debris that may congregate over time.
What can I use to clean my piercing if I don’t have sea salt?
Sterile saline sprays are among the most common products used for cleaning a new piercing as it is the most convenient and portable option.
It does not need to be rinsed off after spraying, making it a quick cleaning fix for those at work or traveling. Mild liquid soaps can also be used as an equally effective alternative to remove and rinse off residues of dirt, cosmetics, sweat, and skin oils.
Products such as rubbing alcohol, antibiotic ointments, and hydrogen peroxide should be avoided. These products are too harsh on the skin and may dry out the piercing or cause irritation.
Aside from products, it is advised to not use cotton pads or Q-tips to apply the solution. This is because cotton fibers may get trapped within the piercing, causing irritation.
What kind of salt do you use to clean piercings?
Although salt has always been a common aftercare product for piercings, not all types of salt aid in cleaning or healing a wound. Below are some properties that salts should have to be used as an effective salt soak:
It is a common misconception that salts with traces of iodine will irritate piercings and should consequently be avoided. However, it is not actually the iodine itself that causes harm.
Most iodized salts and table salt contain certain additives and extra chemicals that may irritate your piercing. The formation of yeast infections is also common from the additive dextrose, a sugar.
Himalayan Sea salt is non-iodized and therefore does not contain any extra chemicals.
Warm and diluted:
Regardless of the type of salt you use, using the appropriate measurement is vital to ensure healing of the piercing and to prevent irritation.
This is why it is commonly advised to use a store-bought soak or spray if in doubt. Exactly one-eighth of a tablespoon, or one-fourth of a teaspoon, must be dissolved completely in half a cup of water.
The water must also be pre-warmed but not boiling hot which may hurt your sensitive piercings.
How do I get rid of a bump on my piercing?
Changes in skin such as bumps around the piercings are not an uncommon occurrence. However, these piercing bumps are typically harmless and go away on their own over time.
They are the result of the body’s immune system responding to the wound and causing inflammation.
Bumps do not typically require treatment but steps can be taken to help the piercing heal.
Identify the irritant and eliminate it:
Bumps are usually formed due to some type of irritant. This is why the first step is to identify the irritant and eliminate it. Try to think of moments in your day-to-day life when you interfere or touch your piercing.
Some factors can be traveling on an airplane – the sudden change in pressure, or touching the piercing with dirty fingers.
Skincare products, headphones, poor-quality jewelry are also common causes of irritants. After identifying them, simply remove them from your everyday routine.
Analyze your jewelry:
After identifying any external issues, the next step is to analyze your jewelry. The piercing jewelry must fit properly with enough space to allow swelling. Studs and hoops should also be made of surgical stainless steel, surgical titanium, niobium, or surgical plastic.
If unsure, visit your local piercing studio. They will help you find the perfect quality item for healing your piercing.
Keep the piercing area clean:
The last step is to keep the piercing area clean and provide it with enough time to fully and properly heal. Experts advise using a sterile saline spray to safely remove debris, discharge, and other buildups.
The longer you wait for the wound to heal, the less chance there is of bumps forming. Once the healing process is complete, you can opt for other shorter studs and hoops.
Can I make my own sea salt spray for piercings?
Although professionals advise buying a store-bought saline spray for healing and cleaning piercings, a homemade sea salt spray can be carefully made by dissolving one-eighth of a tablespoon of the salt in half a cup of water.
The water must be warm and the salt should be dissolved completely to form a solution.
In conclusion, pink Himalayan salt may be used as a safe and effective alternative to saline salt sprays to heal and piercings. However, homemade ones must follow the standard measurement of one-eighth of a tablespoon of salt for half a cup of water.