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What To Know Before Getting Cartilage Piercing? Types, Infection risks, Treatment, Tips

Different types of ear piercings have been in fashion for a long time. There are people all around the world who are obsessed with piercing. Are you planning to get a cartilage piercing soon? Then this guide is the one you need the most right now. Read every section till the end to enjoy a safe and pain-free cartilage piercing or helix piercing experience.

Top 5 Types Of Cartilage Piercing You Can Try

Top Types Of Cartilage Piercing You Can Try

There are so many ways to design your ears and make them look good if you speak about cartilage piercing. Needless to say, they are becoming very popular among piercing professionals these days.

Before going to the painful part, let’s start with some wonderful types of cartilage piercing you can try out:

1. Helix Piercing

Helix Piercing

Being one of the most popular types of cartilage piercing, helix piercing belongs to the slight low pain scale. Here you will get the piercing in the upper cartilage of the ear. While the standard helix piercings are near the ear rim, forward helix or anti-helix are at the base of the helix.

2. Tragus Piercing

Tragus Piercing

Tragus piercing gets a 5 out of 5 on the pain scale. In the place where cartilage overrides the ear entrance, tragus piercing is done. You can use small cartilage piercing earrings or small studs for tragus piercing.

3. Industrial Piercing

Industrial Piercing

When a bar connects the two edges of the ear through two holes, it is an industrial piercing. If you see them on either side, they are actually helix piercing but together they are industrial piercing. Cartilage piercing earrings, in this case, vary from one type to another. For example, captive rings, labret studs, and circular barbells work well in industrial piercing.

4. Snug Piercing

Snug Piercing

Snug piercing or antihelix piercings is the one in the inner edges of ear cartilage. I can give a 9 out of 10 to a snug piercing on the pain meter. But get this into your head that snug piercing is not for the faint-hearted.

5. Rook Piercing

Rook Piercing

Rook piercings can be immensely painful if and only if it’s not done professionally. It suits best in the middle curve of the ear. But some even do it slightly above the daith. Small studs make rook piercing look stunning.

Is Cartilage Piercing Painful?

Is Cartilage Piercing painful

Before you get ready to put on your favorite cartilage piercing earrings, ask yourself if you can bear the painful after-piercing days. If the answer is yes, then be sure that cartilage piercing is far more painful than earlobe piercings. Now the question is, Why? It is because the tissue on the cartilage area is thicker than the ear lobe. So you will experience medium – severe pain and discomfort.

Also, brace yourself for carrying the pain for at least 4 – 8 weeks. The complications generally occur within this time frame only. Cartilage piercings like double cartilage piercing and Industrial piercing or tragus piercing hurt the most. So make sure you are taking special care and following the treatment procedure; helix cartilage piercing will cure up.

Are There Any Risks Of Infections?

Are There Any Risks Of Infections

I hope from the above-discussed points and descriptions; it is pretty clear that helix piercings or cartilage piercing are quite risky. Studies have stated that even with meticulous care, cartilage piercings are prone to infections for about 30% of the time. Generally, piercings on the upper ear, pinna, or high ear get infected.

To be more precise, they can create major health issues, including septicemia. If not treated on time, septicemia or blood poisoning can even lead to death. Cartilage piercing bumps, swelling, or redness are common more often. Some other infective symptoms are as follows:

  • Fever
  • Nausea
  • Chills
  • Thick, smelly discharge
  • Dizziness
  • Green, red or yellow discharge
  • Pustule containing puss
  • Granuloma after 6 weeks
  • Keloid on the piercing area

How To Treat Cartilage Piercing Infections?

How To Treat Cartilage Piercing Infections

One of the most frequently asked questions is how long does it take for a cartilage piercing to heal. Well, the answer depends on how efficiently you can treat the infected areas. Helix cartilage piercings are more prone to infections than other types of ear piercings. Wanna know how to treat cartilage piercing bump and other infectious complications?

Check the bullet points below:

  • Use Sea Salt Soak Or Saline Water For Cleaning

Cartilage piercing bump, keloids, and infections cure excellently with Saline water or salt oak. To make the solution, add ¼ teaspoon of sea salt to 8 ounces of lukewarm water. Use a cotton pad to apply the mixture in the area.

  • Keep The Pierced Site Clean From Time To Time

This is one of the most important steps you need to follow after getting a helix piercing. Make sure you wash your hand properly before touching the pierced area. Make use of warm water, antimicrobial soaps, or medical washes.

  • Chamomile Compresses Are Always Good

Chamomiles work wonders due to their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant nature. By increasing blood flow to the cartilage tissues with a chamomile compress, you can easily cure infected cartilage piercing.

  • Wear Cartilage Earrings Made Of Gold Or Stainless Steel

I understand your eyes shine in excitement when you see cute or badass cartilage earrings. But you have to understand they are not always safe, especially if you have already got an infection. Prioritize wearing cartilage earrings of 24 or 18-karat gold, stainless steel, niobium, and titanium.

Do’s  Don’ts 
Always use warm, distilled water for cleaning. Do not use Alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, benzalkonium chloride, iodopovidone, etc.
You can use Tea Tree Oil solutions to heal the infection.  Do not use any random towels or cloth pieces.
Use Disposable cloth or paper to dry the area.  Do not touch the area for any reason without cleaning your hands properly. 
Get a check-up with the piercer if there are no notable improvements.  Don’t try to remove the cartilage earring for at least 3 months. 

Unheard Things You Must Learn Before Cartilage Piercings

1. No No To Alcohol And Junk Foods!

This is the first and foremost step you have to follow after getting a cartilage piercing. Additionally, when it comes to double cartilage piercing, one has to be really very concerned about his/her dietary regime. Stay away from alcohol and spicy foods for at least 1 month. Otherwise, the chances of infection would spike.

2. You May Not Feel The Sensation Of Pain As Well!

Don’t get overjoyed to hear this, but few fellows have reported that they did not feel any pain at all. This doesn’t mean that the internal inflammation and infection won’t happen. Those disturbances will be there, but the pierced area will appear to be numb. However, that’s a good sign because in most cases, when this happens, the pain generally goes away quickly.

3. Your Peaceful Sleep May Not Be Peaceful Anymore!

To be very frank, once you do the cartilage piercing, forget your sleep for at least 7-10 days or even more in the worst cases. Especially if you are a side sleeper, then your sleeping will be ruined for some time. This is the time when you have to hold patience, hold your breath, and continue treating the pierced area. Also, sleep on another side while the piercing heals to avoid swelling and bleeding.

4. You may Observe Certain Physiological Issues!

So basically, after cartilage piercings, in many cases, the human physiological system tends to reject. This is quite natural, right? You may get allergies, infections, fluid-filled bumps due to the foreign element, i.e., the metal entering your body. Do you know that nasal and cartilage piercings are more vulnerable to contamination and inflammation? The first sign that your body is rejecting the metal insertion is the creation of a Bump followed by discharge, fever, intense pain, soreness, etc.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. How Long Does It Take A Cartilage Piercing To Heal?

In maximum cases, a cartilage piercing takes 4 months to 12 months to heal completely. This is a longer time span than soft tissue piercing or eyebrow piercing, or earlobe piercings. You can put on another ring cartilage ring only after 4-6 months as, during this time, the 1st stage of healing ends.

Q2. When Can I Change My Cartilage Piercing?

It is a question of many when Can I change my cartilage piercing. A helix of cartilage piercing can easily be changed, keeping in mind that the piercing is healed up. So on average, it takes 3 to 6 months to completely heal up, and after that, you can make your first change. It is advisable to change under the guidance or with the help of a professional piercer.

Q3. What Is The Best Age To Get A Cartilage Piercing?

It’s not like that you have to be 18 years above to get Cartilage piercing or helix piercings. Youngsters of 13 or 14 years old can start getting helix piercings. In the end, it’s completely your preference. The more important areas where you need to focus than this is the routine you need to maintain or the treatment procedure after helix piercings.

Q4. What Is The Most Painful Cartilage Piercing?

More or less, every cartilage piercing is painful. But, double helix piercing is more painful than normal helix piercings or cartilage piercing. On the other hand, tragus piercing is done on the thick and small part of the outer ear canal cartilage. Undoubtedly, this is also one of the most painful piercings you can come across.

Q5. Does Double Cartilage Piercing Hurt?

There is no accurate answer to this question as everyone has a different pain tolerance level. Generally, those who have got double helix piercings have reported that the pain is medium and tolerable. However, be sure that the intensity is more than a few other body piercings.

Q6. What Is The Difference Between Piercing Bump Vs Keloid

The debate of Piercing Bump vs Keloid is frequent among both the piercers and customers. Keloid basically refers to a thick scar on the piercing site. On the contrary, bumps are tissue lumps or pustules which may or may not contain fluids. That’s all about Piercing Bump vs Keloid.

The Final Words

That’s it about Cartilage piercing. We have provided you with all the necessary information in this guide. I hope from this blog you have got some rich insights on cartilage piercing infection risks, treatment plans, Dos and Don’ts, some unexplored facts, etc.

Do let us know in the comment area below how this article has enhanced your knowledge about cartilage piercing. Have you gone through any critical phase after getting pierced? Tell us about your treatment procedure in the comment box also; we would love to hear you out.

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