Surface piercings and anchors require extra time and care (often even after they are healed), so whatever your aftercare routine, make sure it is something you can maintain—and stick with it. Surface anchors can take anywhere from two to six months to fully heal, while piercings with a surface barbell can take a year or even longer. Both can easily get irritated from a rough night of sleeping or getting caught on hair or clothing—or seemingly for no reason at all—so don’t be surprised if you find yourself periodically revisiting your aftercare regimen after the initial healing period has passed.
When getting pierced at Infinite, fresh surface anchors (and some surface piercings) are covered with a piece of Tegaderm™ (a clear, breathable, waterproof bandage) immediately after being pierced. You should leave this bandage on for a week, or until it falls off, whichever comes first. Nothing further needs to be done during this time. Once the bandage is off you will want to begin regular piercing care. Surface piercings, and any anchors that do not have a barrier over them, should begin an aftercare routine that first night.
The best thing you can do for a healing surface piercing is a regular regimen of salt-water soaks. Soak your piercing at least twice a day—or more often if it’s irritated or you’re having problems with healing. Mix your solution according to the table under Basic Care.
Sterile saline rinses are great if you’re at work, traveling, or somewhere soaking isn’t an option, but they aren’t a replacement for a good, warm soak. The care for surface piercings and anchors tends to be more problematic than most piercings, and therefore extra effort is needed during healing (and even afterward). Irrigating the surface of the piercing is a good way to remove dirt and bacteria from around the wound, but with surface piercings and anchors the majority of the healing is taking place under the skin. A warm soak not only flushes the surface, but helps with the all-important healing under the piercing.
A final note…
Surface piercings and anchors are temperamental, but most flare-ups can be easily calmed down with a few days of consistent and conscientious soaking. If you’re having problems past that time, stop in and see us. If you have a more serious issue, i.e. the area is swollen and warm to the touch or you get discharge that is dark yellow, greenish, bloody, or has a bad odor, don’t hesitate to talk to a medical professional.