Cheek piercings go through the thick skin in the middle of your cheek and into your mouth, giving the appearance of dimples with beads resting in them. The most common jewelry for a cheek piercing is a long surgical stainless steel labret stud, or a barbell with a flat back disc. Cheek piercings are very prominent and noticeable, making them difficult to hide. However, you can insert a clear acrylic tongue piercing retainer into a fully healed cheek piercing to minimize its appearance.
Lather your hands and the outside of your cheek piercing with antimicrobial or antibacterial soap. Rinse them with warm water and dry them with an unused cloth or paper towel.
Hold the bead on the outside of your cheek piercing between the thumb and forefinger of your non-dominant hand. Hold a fresh paper towel in your dominant hand, or wear a latex or nitrile glove. This will help you get a better grip on the disc or bead inside your mouth.
Turn the disc or bead on the inside of your mouth to the left, or counter-clockwise, until it comes unscrewed. Remove it from your mouth. Pull horizontally on the bead on the outside of your cheek to remove your jewelry.
Insert a clean -- preferably sterile -- acrylic retainer into the piercing. It will insert exactly the same as your barbell. Hold onto the bead or disc on the outside of the retainer, line up the bar with the outside of your piercing, and push horizontally to insert it.
Roll the rubber O-ring onto the retainer from the inside of your mouth to hold your jewelry in place. Push the ring horizontally toward the inside of your cheek until the fit is tight but comfortable.
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- Keep your mouth wide open when inserting the retainer. This stretches the skin on your cheek and makes it easier to see when the retainer is all the way in.
Ann Jones has been writing since 1998. Her short stories have been published in several anthologies. Her journalistic work can be found in major magazines and newspapers. She has a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing.