Skin alters can take place at the website of piercings. These alters are not constantly a cause for concern. For example, piercing bumps space harmless and may go away over time. However, keloid scars can proceed to acquire bigger.

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Although piercing bumps and also keloid scars deserve to initially look similar, over there are methods to differentiate in between them.

In this article, we describe what piercing bumps and keloids are and how to tell the difference in between the two. We additionally discuss the treatment alternatives for both, and also the other problems that may reason skin issues after getting a piercing.

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Piercing bump are small lumps that can appear after a piercing. They often occur following cartilage piercings, together as sleep or upper ear piercings.

Piercing bumps happen when the body’s immune mechanism responds come the wound and initiates the heal response. This response leads come inflammation, i beg your pardon is what reasons the bump.

A human being may notification bleeding, bruising, and also some ede at the website of the piercing in the first couple of weeks after acquiring it. These symptoms space all normal. Other symptoms that space not commonly a reason for problem may include:

itchingsome whitish fluid coming indigenous the site of the woundcrusting roughly the piercing jewelry
What room keloids?

A keloid is a raised scar the occurs as a result of trauma or injury to the skin. Sometimes, this form of scar may appear after a piercing.

A keloid forms due to an overgrowth that fibrous tissue. In response to injury, cells in the skin — referred to as fibroblasts — produce excessive collagen, which leads to the advancement of a keloid.

Keloids have the right to take 3–12 months to construct after the original injury. They start as elevated scars that have the right to be pink, red, purple, or brown and typically end up being darker end time. The appearance have the right to depend top top the ar of the keloid, and the who skin tone.

Earlobe keloid scars are likely to be round or oval. Lock can continue to thrive over time — either easily or slowly — and also can become really large.

The texture of keloids can differ. They deserve to feel soft and doughy or hard and also rubbery. Other symptoms the a human being with a keloid scar might experience include:

How to tell the difference
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Initially, keloids and also piercing bumps deserve to look similar. However, end time, differences will emerge.

The complying with table mirrors some that the vital differences between these skin changes:

Piercing bumpKeloid
LocationAround the piercing siteAround the piercing site yet can extend beyond it
FormationSoon after ~ a piercing3–12 month after piercing
SizeVaries, however after forming, that does not grow biggerMay start little and thrive bigger end weeks, months, or years
ColorPink or flesh-coloredVaries, however it can come to be darker end time

Treatment because that piercing bumps

Piercing bumps are part of the body’s natural an answer to injury, and they carry out not commonly require treatment. However, human being can take procedures to save the area clean, protect against infection, and enable the piercing come heal.

The American Academy of skin science (AAD) recommend:

washing the hands before touching the piercingwashing the piercing through gentle soap and also water once a daytwisting the jewelry within the piercing a few times a day to save the feet openpatting the area dry with a clean noodle pad after bathing or showering and avoiding making use of a towel, which deserve to introduce bacteria

It is essential to note that return the AAD additionally suggest using rubbing alcohol come the piercing, the basic guidance is to avoid doing this as it have the right to slow healing.

Treatment because that keloids

Various treatment alternatives are available for keloids. The appropriate treatment option deserve to depend on several factors, including the type and size of the keloid. Treatment alternatives include:

Surgery: A specialist deserve to surgically eliminate the keloid. However, keloids deserve to return, even after operation removal. Cryotherapy: This treatment is suitable to use on small keloids. During cryotherapy, a doctor freezes the keloid to soften it and also reduce that size. Cryotherapy is not an ideal for human being with darker skin, because of the possibility of skin pigmentation changes.

The AAD recommend that human being who understand that they space prone come keloids avoid acquiring piercings.

Learn more about home care techniques for keloids here.

Other explanations

Bumps in ~ the website of a piercing can sometimes be a sign of another condition or health and wellness issue. Some other feasible causes include:


Infections in new piercings are quite common, and also they can occur if the needle was not sterile or a human is unable to store the piercing fully clean. The symptoms of one infected piercing include:

sorenessswelling and puffinessyellow pus coming out of the piercingnausea and also vomiting

Contact dermatitis

Contact dermatitis is a type of skin rash that occurs once something that touches the skin irritates it. The rash may build as a an outcome of an allergy, friction, or exposure come something corrosive or toxic.

In piercings, feasible causes of contact dermatitis include:

the steel in the jewelrythe metal in the needle or piercing gunthe products that the piercer provides to clean the area

The symptom of call dermatitis include:

fluid-filled blistershivesa burn or stinging sensationitchingdrynessdiscolorationinflammationtenderness

Nickel is responsible for many jewelry allergies. Nickel is existing in less expensive jewelry, but gold or silver jewelry might contain little amounts that it, so this could additionally cause a reaction.

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The best way to combat a jewel allergy is to replace the metal with a hypoallergenic one, such together titanium, stainless steel, or 18- or 24-karat gold.