Is your nose piercing infected? Get the infected nose piercing symptoms, how to treat nose piercing infection and see pictures of an infected nose piercing.
An unsightly bump, keloid or bump is not what you have in mind when you go in for a nose piercing. Unfortunately sometimes it is what you get. This could be due to trauma in the case you have a bump. The trauma could be due to hitting a nose piercing that is yet to heal against something, or forcefully pulling out the nose ring or stud.
You could also get an infection if you keep touching your yet to heal pierced nose with unwashed hands. Or if the piercing was done in less than sterile conditions. Sometimes it is also a question of not properly caring for the site of the piercing.
Whatever the cause, you will not be the first one to have an infected nose ring piercing. In fact, infection is a mainstay on the nose piercing risks list. Who are we kidding, any body piercing list. When you pierce any part of your body, nose or not nose, you essentially create a wound and any wound runs a risk of infection.
Most nose piercings are on the nostrils, either the left or right, but there is a small percentage that pierces the septum. When we talk infection of a nose piercing, we will also be referring to septum piercings.
Let us explore how to identify an infection on a nose piercing and go through the best care for the infection.
Signs of a nose piercing infection
You can tell if your nose cartilage is infected from piercing using this simple check list.
1. Redness that darkens or increases with time
It is normal to have some redness on a fresh piercing. If however this darkens a couple of days later to a plum shade or purple, it could be a sign that nose ring site is infected.
2. A bump
Not every bump or bubble around nose is an infected nose piercing bump. Cartilage which is what is what is pierced through to get that piercing bumps easily and also takes longer to heal. Sometimes, there may be scarring which is what we know as keloids on nose piercing. The bump could also be a granuloma which is formed when the skin around the piercing gets inflamed.
However, you can get a nose ring infection bump if there is a staphylococcal bacterial infection or staph infection in short in your piercing wound. Bumps from infection in your nose piercing will look like a pimple, a painful to touch painful with fluid inside. It may give off, heat if it is festering.
3. Pus, liquid
A thick green, whitish, or yellow discharge oozing from your piercing or a bump on the piercing in your nose is one of the clearest signs of an infection. Note that it is quite normal for a properly healing nose piercing to ooze a thin clear fluid; it is the thicker colored discharge that is a sign of infection.
4. Foul smell
If you notice a bad smell from your nose ring or stud, the piercing could be infected.
It is normal for a fresh nose piercing to hurt, sting or burn for a few days. However if the pain seems to get sharper as the days go by, or suddenly starts on a piercing that had been healing, it could be signal infection.
6. Chills and fever
This symptom along with a couple of those above may hint at a severe systemic infection. Please get to a doctor as soon as possible.
Treatment for a nose piercing that’s infected
Who and indeed how you get the piercing will go a long way into determining whether your nose piercing develops an infection or not. This is why it is important to carefully choose a piercer who does the piercing under very sterile conditions and who will take you through how to care for a nose piercing.
If they do not, or you missed a few things, you can read more on nose piercing after care on this page. Find some useful nose piercing information here too. And check out this great tutorial while you are at it.
It is not advisable to do your nose piercing at home, never mind that if you Google how to do a nose piercing myself you might get more than a few results. You could consider a fake nose piercing if you are dying to sport a nose ring but for some reason are not able to or ready to go to a professional to do it.
Avoid DIY when it comes to an infected nose piercing bump too and go back to your piercer or a doctor to take a look at it. This is because you may mistake a granuloma for an infection pimple or infection bump and try popping it, which could give you a whole new complication.
Granulomas and keloids treatment will be very different from that of a staph infection bump and the best person to decide what that bump on your ear piercing is should be a doctor.
Here is what to do for an infected nose ring;
1. Do not remove the nose ring
Removing it may seem like the most obvious answer at the time, but it is the worst idea for a nose ring infection. Not only will it cause the piercing to close up, you could also cause an abscess when this happens as there will be no more free drainage of pus. Leave your nose stud on and go to the doctor.
Please note that if you have an allergic reaction the material of your nose ring, then removing it is extremely important. Ensure that you do not mistake an allergic reaction for an infection.
2. Avoid touching it
Your fingers may be carrying more bacteria to the infected area, please fight the urge to keep touching the infected piercing site to allow it heal.
3. Keep it clean
If you must touch the infected area or nose ring, ensure your hands are clean by thoroughly washing with anti-bacterial soap under running water.
4. Consider going to a doctor
In fact, do not stop at considering. Please go to a doctor if you notice your nose piercing is looking and feeling infected. Do not take a sharp object to any bumps that may come up. Most especially and we cannot stress this enough, if the infected nose piercing bump is inside the nose.
Even if you do not think the infection is severe, see a doctor if your nose piercing keeps getting infected.
5. Try homemade anti-septic and anti-bacterial remedies
If you are reading this, you are either stubborn and did not listen to us sending you to the doctor all those times, or you want to know a remedy for minor nose piercing infections. For the sake of you who fall in the latter group, we will reveal a few remedies you can try at home.
a) Sea salt
Make a solution with sea salt and water and dab this on with a Q tip inside and outside your nose piercing. Sea salt helps kill bacteria.
b) Soak it
Some people have found that putting their nose in a bowl or glass of salt water for as long as you can stand it every day helps get rid of their nose ring infections faster. This cleans the infected are a thoroughly killing bacteria.
c) Tea tree antibacterial swab
Tea tree is a powerful anti-septic and is also really simple to use. You will need pure tea tree oil, the emphasis on pure is because the market is clogged with a lot of already adulterated oil and some of the substances mixed in might be harmful to your skin, thus beating the purpose.
Dilute the pure tea tree oil with any carrier oil that does not irritate your skin and apply this on your nose, around the nose ring. This remedy will make an infection all better in a couple of days if you use twice every day.
d) Chamomile compress
Dip a chamomile tea bag in warm water. It works better if the water is more on the hot than warm, not scalding though. Place this compress on the piercing infection until it is no longer warm to get your nose piercing healing. Use daily.
In this remedy, we are taking advantage of aspirins anti-inflammatory properties. Make a paste with aspirin and water and apply this paste on the infected stud or nose ring piercing. This remedy has to be one of the best nose piercing treatments as it works in just a couple of days.