Piercing your nose may seem like a desirable procedure to make you look cooler, but a nose ring can also cause a bevy of problems. From an unclean piercing environment to infection and healing problems, a simple 20-minute trip to the jewelry store can saddle you with months of problems. Consider the potential problems before you make the decision to get a nose ring. You may find the risks aren't worth the change in your appearance.
The procedure for getting a nose ring can vary from shop to shop, so choosing a reputable jewelry shop to have the procedure done is imperative. Some shops still use a piercing gun, which is problematic because the gun is often not strong enough to pierce through the nose cartilage. According to body modification website BMEzine.com, nose piercing should always be done by sterile needle. A needle is the best way to pierce the cartilage, but, if the piercing is done with a dirty needle, infection is a risk.
The healing time for a nose ring, as long as there is no problem, is about two to four months. During this time the area should be cleaned and the ring should stay in the nose. Unfortunately, removing the nose ring, not cleaning it or having it bumped or moved around can extend the healing time, leaving you tender and red for much longer than if it had healed properly.
A less-than-reputable jewelry shop, dirty equipment and poor care can leave your nose ring open to infection. With infection can come a pus discharge from the site, redness, pain, swelling, and small bumps that are known as granulomas. Granulomas are small bumps that appear under the skin, due to the cartilage healing improperly. Cartilage does not heal the same way as skin, and can take on a bumpy, rough appearance when healing.
Some lifestyles do not condone a nose ring. A conservative job, high school and even your parents may not allow the nose ring, leaving you removing the ring and putting it back in frequently. Besides causing infection and leaving you susceptible to granulomas, removing your ring when it has not yet healed can cause the hole to grow over and need repiercing. It can also stop the healing of the hole altogether, so that your nose ring never fully heals and stabilizes.
The American Academy of Family Physicians warns against the medical dangers that can sometimes accompany a nose ring. Jewelry aspiration, where the jewelry is swallowed or becomes embedded in the nasal wall is a concern. Perichondritis, accompanied by pus, redness and pain is a common medical side effect, as is septal hematoma formation with bruising and bleeding.
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Kay Ireland specializes in health, fitness and lifestyle topics. She is a support worker in the neonatal intensive care and antepartum units of her local hospital and recently became a certified group fitness instructor.