Have you gotten your lip pierced? If you have, you may want to check out the signs of an infected lip piercing looks like, such as swelling. Learn how to treat the infected lip piercing, when is the time to see doctor. Also, we also talk about the aftercare of lip piercing and how to prevent getting infection.
How Do I Know If My Lip Piercing is Infected?
A lip piercing is definitely more sensitive than an earlobe piercing because it is done on the oral cavity, and the place is laden with bacteria and is always warm and moist.
A lip piercing infection can manifest in a variety of ways. There are minor and significant signs of infection.
Minor Inflammation or Swelling and Localized Swelling
The most common sign is minor inflammation or swelling and localized swelling. Remember, a piercing is essentially an open wound. People also report some throbbing that takes place beyond the control of the person with the piercing.
In some situations, you may also find a lip piercing infection bump either at the front of the piercing (outside) or inside. This is considered a worrying symptom, and you should get checked out as quickly as you can if there is a bump present. Bumps are not typical and may be an indicator of a severe infection or something much worse.
In some instances, the area may also feel unusually warm. Warmth is a sign that the body’s immune system is battling an infection. There is a surge of blood toward the infection area, which locally increases the temperature of the affected spot. This is called “persistent warmth” in medical parlance.
Discharging from the Wound
The next symptom is discharging from the wound. The discharge may be either be explicit or, in some cases, yellowish or cream. A discharge occurs when the infection worsens, and the damage to the area worsens as well. Tissue damage often causes liquids to come out of a wound. While this is not always serious, it is a sign that an infection is underway.
If there is excessive bleeding, that shouldn’t be happening at all. Do not touch the post; do not do anything to the piercing. Just get medical attention as soon as you can.
The same applies if you see the greenish push and develop a sudden fever a few days after getting a piercing. These are already severe symptoms that warrant a look by a medical professional. Should you observe any of the last few symptoms, we want you to get to a doctor fast. Not tomorrow, but today.
How to Heal an Infected Lip Piercing?
Cleaning with Saline Solution
Cleaning a lip piercing is simple. The first method is cleaning it with saline solution. Saline solution is cheap, and it works wonders for all kinds of piercings. Get the best results, get a clean piece of cloth, and dip it into the saline solution. Do not use paper towels and similar materials that may break apart the moment it gets wet.
Gently dab the saline solution around the piercing. Do it gently, and just be patient with the process. If there is any minor crusting around the post, just keep dabbing until the crusting disappears. It’s okay if you get a bit of the saline solution in the wound because it’s just saline. Repeat as necessary until the wound and the surrounding area looks clean.
Scrubbing a piercing or the area around the piercing is unnecessary. This may also cause problems such as irritation or tissue damage. Any accidental tissue damage may worsen the pain and cause a delay in healing, which we’re sure you don’t want to happen.
Cleaning with Salt and water
If you don’t want to buy saline, feel free to combine eight tablespoons of regular salt with one glass of water. Use distilled water if possible, or at least purified water. The process of cleaning is the same.
Use of Alcohol-free Mouthwash
In cases where you can’t use a saline solution, you may temporarily use an alcohol-free mouthwash. However, this should not replace the saline solution, recommended for cleansing all kinds of wounds.
How to Prevent a Lip Piercing Infection?
Do Not Touch Labret/Lip Piercing
First, don’t touch your labret piercing or any other lip piercing you may have. Our hands are rarely immaculate, and even if they are, there may still be some bacteria (or worse, viruses) lingering on the fingertips. Since piercings are open wounds, you never know when an infection might set in because you touch the piercing in the first place. We also caution against moving the jewelry post around and removing the post.
Do Not Remove Lip Jewelry From Un-healed Piercing
Our general recommendation is altogether avoiding the removal of the post before the wound is healed. If you feel that it has to be removed, we recommend consulting with a physician first or visiting the professional piercer who did the piercing in the first place. Never remove the post from a fresh piercing at home because you are not equipped to do so.
Also, you may end up causing further tissue damage to the site. If the piercer is not available, you have no choice but to visit a GP or go to an emergency room.
Wash Your Piercing Daily
The second preventive method for lip piercings is being meticulous about washing the area daily. Yes, we know that there are always bacteria in the mouth. However, since this is a wound, it has to be cleaned daily. Freshly pierced lips need to be washed gently with a saline solution or a cleansing solution recommended by your professional piercer.
When is it Time to See a Doctor for Lip Piercing Infection?
As mentioned earlier, you may want to watch out for alarming symptoms such as discharges, continuous bleeding, and extreme pain on the lip. Bleeding is especially alarming because lip piercings aren’t supposed to bleed for a long time. After piercing, there might be some blood, but it will eventually taper out because the body has its clotting factor.
Pus is alarming because the lips only have a limited surface area, and tissue damage can occur rapidly when there are pus and bleeding combined.
How to Know if my Lip Piercing is Healed?
Lip piercing healing is observable when your lip piercing looks healthy, and there is no longer any pain, discharge, or anything remotely related to infections. Around this time, you can begin to get into changing your lip jewelry and experimenting with different looks. We do not recommend changing your lip post before the piercing is fully healed.
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