Getting a new piercing can be an exciting adventure, we would know. And the best part of this adventure is that it extends for a lifetime. Starting from the day you undergo the actual piercing procedure, there’s a lot of lined up for you to do with your piercing – and it all starts with changing your piercing jewelry from the bland default option to something that appeals more to you.

How long do you have to wait before you can do this? Well, read on to find out

  • Piercings can take a while to heal

Here’s the simple answer to the how long you should wait question; as long as it takes for your piercing to heal completely. Emphasis on the word completely because piercings heal from ‘outside-in,’ that is, a piercing might appear all well on the outside even though it’s still healing on the inside. This is especially true for piercings that go through cartilages like the nasal and ear cartilage piercings.

The next logical question to ask then would be how do I know my piercing is completely healed. From experience, the best way for you to appropriately determine if your piercing has healed and is indeed ready to accept new piercing jewelry would be to consult a professional piercing artist, preferably the one who got you pierced in the first place. Body piercing professionals are well trained and experienced in the subtle art of creating and caring for body piercing. By virtue of this expertise they, unlike you would know when a piercing if fully healed.

That said because piercings generally heal within a relative time frame you could estimate just how long it would take for yours to heal completely.

  • Nasal piercings, for instance, take on the average six months to heal. Ear piercing should heal completely in a few weeks if they’re on your earlobe and probably one or two months if we’re dealing with a cartilage piercing.
  • Genital piercings as well as dermal piercings typically take very long to heal and even when healing is complete, you’d still want to consult a professional piercing artist to do the jewelry change. Healing time for this group of piercings is usually in the range of 3 – 6 months.
  • Facial piercings, everything from eyebrow piercings, lip piercings, and nostril piercings will on the average, take 3 – 6 months to heal completely. Tongue piercings, although classified as facial piercings heal within a shorter time frame all thanks to the highly vascular nature of the tongue.
  • Navel or belly button piercings top the chart of slow healing piercings. Expect yours to take at least 12 months to heal if you have one.
  • Bottom line

While this guide provides a summary of when your piercing would heal, your best would still be to consult a piercing professional to help you determine when the time’s right to change your piercing jewelry. This way, you’re sure you’re not tampering with a healing piercing, a mistake that could increase the healing time or worse still cause an infection.