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Thread: Nipple piercing problems...help!! :(

  1. #1
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    Unhappy Nipple piercing problems...help!! :(

    I need advice badly! :( I've had both of my nipples pierced for almost 2 years now. I've had trouble on and off with both of them, nothing major just irritations and what forth, but more so with the right one. Well recently I am seeing new symptoms, I don't know if it's an infection or what, but it has been bothering me terribly for the past few weeks and I'm scared :( Well, first of all it gets irritated all the time, like almost infected, and I wash it with antibacterial soap and soak it with sea salt water. The irritation/infection or whatever it is has pretty much gone away and it doesn't hurt, but I am getting these things that look almost like little pimples near my nipple. First it was just one and now I am seeing more. I am so paranoid about it I keep feeling my boob to see if I feel any lumps in it. I keep having these horrible thoughts that I'm going to get a bad infection and have to get my boob cut off and I really don't have anybody I can talk to who would know anything about it. I get so scared about it I want to cry sometimes. I want to just get rid of the damn piercing but I am afraid that if I do have some sort of infection it will trap it inside and make it worse. Has anybody else had anything like this? Does anybody know what it is? Please help!!

  2. #2
    Senior Member kuku's Avatar
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    What metal were you pierced with and what metal / type of jewellery are you wearing in them now?

    From your comments on the ear piercing problems thread its probably safe to say that you have a nickel allergy so if you are wearing surgical steel, rather than titanium, bars/ rings in the piercing its likely that this is going to be what is causing your reactions. Nipple piercings can take 18 months to fully heal also so if you changed the jewellery to soon / regularly this could be causing you issues too, especially if you tried to heal around a ring, which causes a lot of irritation.

    Antibacterial soap is also an irritant because it is too strong and strips the piercing of the good bacteria it needs to heal with so lay off that too

    Are the little pimples skin coloured? Red? Are they like hard bits of skin? If they are then to me it sounds like hyerptrophic scarring which is caused by irritation to the piercing and is easily treatable once we work out what the irritant is (imo its likely to be your jewellery)!
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  3. #3
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    When I got them pierced, the lady gave me curved barbells (they didn't give me a choice) and I wore those for the first year or so. They said I could change them out in 6 months but I still waited quite a while because I couldn't manage to change them myself because of the curve. My coworker decided she wanted to get her nipples done, so I went with her (to a different place from where I got mine done), and they had these cool sun shaped nipple things and I really wanted them. The barbells were straight and I knew I couldn't get them in myself without hurting myself, so I bought them and got the girl to put them in for me after she did my coworkers piercing. The woman told me that they always do nipples with a straight barbell. Well it hurt when she did the first one, it almost felt like she was re-piercing it. The second one wasn't so bad. But I think even before I got them changed I was having problems on and off. I just looked up the exact same nipple jewelry I bought at the piercing place and it says it is made of surgical steal. You think if I got titanium ones that might eliminate the problem? I'd love to keep them but I am starting to think that they are more trouble than they are worth. :(

    Should I just do sea salt soaks? I wash it with the soap because I don't want it to get all infected and disgusting D: When they give me problems I just panic and feel like I have to use antibacterial soap. I end up doing it every morning and night. Is there a good way to keep them clean without having to soak them?

    Well they aren't actually on the piercing itself, but near it. They are flat but they have like a little whitehead and I can squeeze it out. They come and go but in the same exact spots. First I just had one underneath my nip, and then I got a couple more. When my nipple isn't irritated or anything they go away. They really aren't that noticeable but of course I notice them. I read some stuff about them on various web sites that said they were harmless, but I am worried because I only get them next to the problem piercing and not the other one. Even though what I read said they aren't dangerous I am still paranoid about it D:

    Thanks so much for helping me out. I've been so worried over all of this. I am going to try to find some titanium jewelry and pray that it fixes the problem.

  4. #4
    Senior Member kuku's Avatar
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    What probably happened is you irritated the piercing by changing from a curved to a straight shaped bar - your fistula (piercing hole) will have healed around the curved shape and is now being forced to bend in a different direction but this will have only caused upset for a short while as eventually your fistula will have gotten used to the new shape so its not something to worry about now. The piercer you spoke to was right, straight bars are better for most people to heal around due to the nature and shape of the nipple tissue (curved bars can put unnecessary pressure on it) so it was a good idea to change - and now you have more jewellery options too!

    It sounds like one of your piercings was more healed than the other also, so the threading of the new bar going through damaged the still healing one a bit which may be why the bumps are more noticeable on one side than the other - because one of the piercings has a nicely healed fistula helping to protect it from the irritating nickel somewhat and the otherside may still be trying to heal and getting irritated by the nickel in the surgical steel as it does so. So changing to a titanium or PTFE (medical grade plastic) bar may really help just get the problem one to settle down and finally heal.

    Yes do stop with the antibacterial soap its just overkill, your body needs a natural balance of bacteria in order to heal properly and antibacterial agents strip all the bacteria from the wound leaving your body to work overtime to reproduce the bacteria's it needs. Plus it only cleans the outside of the piercing, it doesn't get right inside and pull out any gunk from under the bar, which a sea salt soak does

    Since your piercing is quite mature now you are at very little risk of infection (piercings heal from the outside inwards so you have a barrier of tissue protecting the healing from outside influences) and really you only need to sea salt soak the piercing when its crusty or feeling sore / upset. Otherwise just use a gentle body soap in the shower on the area and leave it be, over-cleaning can also be a irritant as piercings quite like being left to do their own thing!

    As for your pretty bars, can you unscrew the balls at both ends? If so then you could try screwing the balls onto a titanium bar at a later date when everything has settled down as some people find having surgical steel outside the piercing is fine!
    Last edited by kuku; 04-11-2010 at 10:05 AM.
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    Ok I see, so if it is an allergic reaction that would make sense because of course when I am in the shower I use a regular body wash (not antibac) on them and that never seemed to be enough to keep them from getting pissy. I never understood why they were acting up like that because I did the soaks often enough and kept them clean enough and they'd be alright but then they'd get upset again :( I went ahead and got online and found some titanium barbells and ordered them yesterday. The ones I am wearing now do have little balls on the ends and they both come off. I have been wearing these little nipple shield things, my coworker got them for me for my birthday from Spencer's, they look like a sun and they have little jewels in them and I love them so I was hoping I could wear those with the new barbells if they work out for me. I am kind of excited to get my new ones, because I was just about ready to get rid of the piercings all together and if this fixes the problem then I won't have to I suppose when I get them and wear them for a bit I will report back :3

  6. #6
    Senior Member kuku's Avatar
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    Good luck with it and I'm glad your nice balls screw off so that you can wear them again (at least if everything settles down and you change the balls and start getting problems you'll know its just the balls and be able to change back)

    As for the nipple shields i'd leave off wearing them just for the first month while everything is settling down as the added weight and movement from them could cause things to flare up.

    Hope it all goes well for you!
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  7. #7
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    I fully agree, its worth spending a few quid more on a good quality bar, especially if you are already getting problems. It seems nickel (and copper) allergies are fairly common. A titanium alloy is probably less likely to have junk in it than a stainless steel. The problem at the moment is that there is so much low grade metal coming out of China (its not the only place, but one of the main ones). There was a case at the place I work, where a lady set off a radiation alarm. It turned out to be the steel buckle on her handbag which contained a radioactive contaminant - made in China.

    Good luck kitteechaos.
    -4mm left nipple - 7mm right nipple-
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