Feeling anxious about a scary bump on piercing?
Don’t panic, you are not the only one who confront this problem! As many people constantly face a bump piercing problem, we gathered here some tips that will help you to get rid of it quickly.
What Is It
A piercing bump is a hypertrophic scar, which has formed inside of the piercing and spilled out on the top or on the bottom of the piercing hole OR infection your piercing hole experiences.
- The hypertrophic scarring results in a little bump, located around the external piercing holes.
- The infection results in a bump caused by bacterias. Usually, it has other symptoms like enormous redness, fever, pus-filled bumps.
Although bump is a quite common and not dangerous piercing side effect, it can get quite nasty and problematic.
Why Does It Appear
It is quite natural to ask yourself: “what happened to my piercing?” or “what to do with this thing behind piercing?” while observing in the mirror a scary cartilage piercing bump.
However, no need to worry, it is simply a scar tissue or infection which can appear on back or front of ear.
Below you will find some common problems, which cause a keloid or infection bump on cartilage or any other piercing.
- A badly performed piercing procedure. An inexperienced master could make certain mistakes during perforation, such as using a gun instead of a needle for piercing or choosing a bad piercing angle, which would damage more tissue than actually needed.
- Close to other piercings. Some brave piercers could place several piercings close to each other, which could eventually create an ear piercing bump or even deform your ear. Therefore, research the best piercing studio or consult with your friends, before getting a new piercing. And never perform it at home, except if you are a professional piercer yourself.
- Using a harsh cleaner. Cleaners containing alcohol dissolve a scab away, and as you already know, your body produces a scar tissue instead, which creates a piercing bubble. Therefore, do not use cleaners with hydrogen peroxide, rubbing alcohol or chlorhexidine.
- Improper jewelry. Sometimes, the jewelry length or metal plays a crucial role. Your body constantly reacts to the materials inside of it. You may be allergic to certain metals, and it would show up in a keloid bump around piercing. To avoid allergiс reactions, use a jewelry made of gold, implant grade titanium or niobium, instead of stainless steel.
- Moving and rotating the jewelry. When the jewelry is constantly rotating inside the hole, the above-mentioned scar tissue is being produced. Rotating and pulling can happen even unintentionally, for example, while sleeping. When you sleep on the piercing side or when you are moving in your bed at night, the jewelry can be irritated and, consequently, you may get a trauma, which would cause a bump on piercing.
- Lack of aftercare. Any piercing should be taken care of, otherwise, the bacteria would get into the hole and the area would get infected. This usually results in a pus-filled pimple, and sometimes even bleeding. Any dirt or even decorative cosmetics can also cause an infection bump.
Why Does Scar Tissue Form?
During the initial piercing healing, a scab will appear inside of the wound. This is the way how your body treats the damaged tissue. If such scab or crust is constantly removed, your body simply stops producing it, causing a scar tissue to appear. Even if you think that you didn’t pick up any scab, you have to keep in mind that rotating or moving your jewelry cause the same effect.
Next, your body makes a scar tissue instead of scab material, and that tissue starts bubbling out, and it has no way to go but on the top of a piercing hole.
A piercing keloid usually appears on a new piercing. But an ear piercing bump can also come out later on the ear hole, during the initial healing process, which could take up to 1 year for the cartilage piercings. A cartilage keloid happens to old piercings as a result of bacteria getting into the wound.
How to Get Rid of Piercing Bump
A piercing keloid is a common side effect of a cartilage or nose piercings.
However, it doesn’t mean that you could let it stay. You would need some patience, as getting rid of it may take some time.
The duration of treatment can take from 3 days to a month, depending on the chosen cure method, and the state of your keloid bump.
So, let’s explore some tricks, that would make your piercing look as good as a new one.
Disclaimer: the information contained in this article is for general informational purposes only, and it has been taken from the open sources, available on the internet. Call your piercer for additional information.
1. Sea Salt
You may use it in a few ways:
- Put salt into a coffee cup with clean warm water and mix it until the salt is dissolved and the water is white. You can also microwave the solution for a few seconds to get it warmer, but without making it too hot. When it is ready, dunk your nose or ear into the water for a few minutes. Perform this procedure twice a day
- Alternatively, you may apply the compresses or sea salt soaks. Take the cotton pads or swabs soaked in a salt solution, and put it on the bump with little pressure. Hold it for a couple of minutes twice a day. Remember not to irritate or rotate the jewelry during the procedure. In case you have a sensitive skin you can add a chamomile tea to the liquid and brew it for a while. It will calm and comfort your skin
Keep using the solution until the bump is completely gone. Normally, this treatment should not last more than a week.
I recommend specially created for piercing care Non-iodized Sea Salt by Urban Relief.
Some people prefer to buy a ready sea salt solution. If you do not want to make it yourself every day, you may use a special H2Ocean 4oz Piercing Aftercare Spray. The spray should be applied also 2 times a day.
2. Colloidal silver
This option can be used for many purposes, such as to cure acne, to boost the immune system or even for dietary purposes, putting it into food. So, as you can see, colloidal silver is quite a safe solution.
It is better to apply it after shower twice a day. You should just drop it on a bump and clean the area with a cotton swab for a couple of minutes.
The treatment can take up to one week, and on the first day, you would notice your bump substantially reducing.
However, this magic solution has one downside. The liquid is yellow and it would stay yellow on your piercing for a while.
If it doesn’t scare you, you can buy Colloidal Silver Spray 2 oz on Amazon.
3. Tea tree oil
Anyway, if you go for this solution, you should be very cautious, and put only a small drop of it on a bump itself, not inside the wound. A tea tree oil is going to soak the moisture out of this bump and dry your skin a little.
Use the solution twice a day: before you go to bed and when you wake up in the morning, barely touching the bump with a small drop on your finger. Remember to have your hands always washed before the procedure. After applying it, in the morning you would notice a little dry skin, so you can peel that skin off and repeat the procedure.
The entire treatment can take up to one month until the keloid would completely disappear. You may also combine this tea tree oil with a non-alcohol cleaning solution.
Tea Tree Essential Oil 1 fl oz is a commonly used tea tree oil, recommended by professional piercers, which can be easily found on Amazon.
Simply mix 2 or 3 aspirin tablets with a drop of warm boiled water, and apply it to a bump for about half an hour. Then, remove the rest of the paste with warm water.
The treatment usually takes 3 or 4 days, after which the bump will go away.
Aspirin is quite easy to get in any pharmacy, or you can order Bayer Aspirin Regimen (Low Dose) straight from Amazon.
5. The Piercing disc
The disc is made of medical-grade silicone and the should be worn on a jewelry to have a direct contact with a bump. Due to its sterile and gentle properties, it can heal the keloids within 2-4 weeks without any additional efforts from your side!
If you want to try the easiest bump-healing solution, you may find a Plastic Nylon Discs for Earring Backs on Amazon.
6. Honey and lemon juice
These are some common home remedies, which are accessible anytime. Some people argue that applying the squeezed lemon juice or raw honey for 2 or 3 times per day helped them to get rid of the piercing bump within a week. Well, if other methods fail, you may also try this one!
Real-life healing process
Images based on Doreen Angel experience.
Used during treatment:
When to Visit a Doctor
You should immediately visit a doctor or dermatologist to get a professional hypertrophic scarring piercing treatment when:
- Home treatment didn’t help in 2-3 weeks;
- You have yellow or green pus around or next to piercing;
- You experience bleeding or the piercing area is excessively swollen and painful;
- You have a hard lump on piercing. It may indicate more serious health problems;
- You have a huge trauma problem.
In any case, if there are clear signs of an infection or other unwanted complications, it is always better to consult with a professional piercer or doctor in order to eliminate larger problems in advance.
Don’t Do It
You should stay away from the dangerous self-treatment methods which do not actually help to treat a bump:
- Do not over clean the area, as you may irritate your piercing even more and only get a bigger bump;
- You should not pop the bump in any case. Otherwise, it will bleed and hurt a lot. Moreover, you will just open a door to the infections. However, if you pop it accidentally, then do clean the area, drain the rest of the bump, and use aspirin to reduce the redness;
- Do not remove the jewelry, as you would need to start the entire piercing process from the beginning. The removal would make a hole to close constantly, but the bump will remain;
- Do not touch the area with dirty hands to avoid the spread of bacteria;
- Do not sleep on the piercing side to avoid trauma.
How to Prevent
It is always better to foresee the complication than to treat it. Therefore:
- Choose the proper jewelry. Make sure that it is not larger than needed. Otherwise, it would move inside the hole, resulting in a keloid bump;
- Choose non-allergenic metals, such as gold or titanium;
- Avoid irritating the jewelry and constantly touching it. If you have a long hair, try to pull it away from your ear hole during the healing process;
- Do not get pierced with a gun, as it hardly crashes the cartilage, causing a piercing bubble to form;
- Do your homework before getting a piercing. Find a professional and experienced piercer (not just nearby tattoo studio), who would make the procedure right from the beginning.
- Is it dangerous?
No. A bump around piercing is not dangerous, as long as you take proper care of it. Although, it feels itchy and uncomfortable.
- Is it curable?
Yes. A piercing bump can be cured easily by cleaning it with a sea salt solution, tea tree oil, colloidal silver or aspirin.
- Can I remove jewelry to get rid of it?
No. You should not remove the jewelry, as it will not make a piercing keloid go away. However, the hole will close, and you would need to perforate the tissue again to get your piercing back.
- Could I squeeze it?
No. You should neither squeeze it nor pop. As it will only let the bacteria in, and the blister will appear again.
- What type of piercing may cause it?
Usually, it is caused by cartilage piercings, such as a helix, tragus, industrial, earlobe, rook and daith piercing. However, the bump can also be triggered by nose and belly piercings.
- How long does it take for a keloid to heal?
It depends on individual characteristics and on the chosen treatment. Generally, it takes from 3 days to one month to get rid of keloids on piercing.
General tips videos
Watch these videos to get the treatment details.
See step-by-step process on how to treat your piercing bump.