Third Conch's the Charm!
First off, this may be a little long, but I feel the need to explain some things before getting into the experience of my third conch. I don't want anyone to have to go through what I have been through, so please bear with me. I recently wrote another experience on here about my second conch piercing. I thought everything was going to be alright, I mean the place I went to seemed sterile, everything seemed clean and whatnot. But things took a turn for the worst.
Ever since the day I got my second conch piercing, it constantly felt irritated. It wasn't a sore feeling like my other conch, it was this painful irritated feeling. I don't know how to describe it other than that. I didn't think it was the jewelry, because even though I don't think it's good quality titanium, it's in all my other piercings and has only given me problems with this conch. I don't think it was anything I was doing. I went through all the things I do on a daily basis and couldn't think of anything I was doing that would cause it to feel this way. I don't sleep on it, I don't use hair products besides shampoo and conditioner in the shower and I make sure none of that get's on my piercings, I don't touch it unless I'm cleaning it and that's with clean hands, I don't put anything harsh on it, it never gets knocked. It was just plain irritated. I finally figured it was because I had a circular barbell in it as opposed to a straight barbell so I went back to the guy that did it after a week and got it changed to a straight barbell. I know I should've waited but I couldn't take the irritated painful feeling in my ear any longer.
When he changed it, he told me it was infected, and I couldn't believe it. It never looked infected, and was never pussing or bleeding so I'm not sure weather it really was or not at the time, but if it wasn't it got infected a few days later. I thought things were getting better with having the bar in, but it only got worse. The pain radiated throughout my ear. No amount of ib profin could help the pain. I got it changed on a Sunday, and then the following Wednesday woke up from my ear being in so much pain. It was hot, throbbing, swollen, and extremely painful. It was crusty and pussing, and wasn't apparently going to let me sleep. I didn't want to go to the doctor because most doctors aren't piercing friendly, and plus I knew my dad was going to say something which he did. He was basically like 'Why did you get it pierced in the first place if it was just going to get badly infected?" It's not like I asked for the infection. Well anyway, I went to the doctor and she gave me two different types of pills to take for the infection. She didn't make me take it out thank God, but she did douse my ear in hydrogen peroxide, which did not feel good lol.
I still am not 100% sure of why it got infected. Like I said, I've gone through everything I was doing and don't think it was something I was doing or not doing for that matter, that caused it to get badly infected. I would be honest and own up to it if I was playing with it or not cleaning it, or whatever, but I've been really careful with it and have been trying to do everything right so it wouldn't end up infected like my second one did. I hate to blame my piercer for it getting infected, but I think it could have been his fault. One thing that bothered me that he did was not properly sterilize my jewelry that I brought in before he put it in my ear. He knew I had only had my piercing for a week, and yet all he did was spray the bar with alcohol and wipe it off. And the bar I brought in was definitely not sterilized before hand, and I had been wearing it in other piercings. So I think that bacteria that was on the bar could have been what go into my piercing and got it infected? That's the only thing I can figure that caused it to get so badly infected. I've never had anything like that happen with any of my other piercings and I hope I never have to go through that again. It's doing much better now, and has been infection free for almost two weeks now so that's good. I am definitely going to make sure I take wonderful care of my newest conch piercing so it doesn't start out like my other one did.
The moral of that story is to make sure you go to someone who uses proper sterilization techniques (autoclave) and never pick a place just because they are the cheapest. Good piercings aren't cheap, and cheap piercings aren't good. It does cost more to have higher quality, implant grade, materials put into your piercing, and to sterilize something in an autoclave, but it's so worth it. You're health is something to not play around with. I don't want anyone to ever have to deal with what I did. It was so painful and so awful, so please research good piercing studios preferably one with an APP member (safepiercing.org) and don't be afraid to ask questions about how they sterilize their equipment and where their jewelry comes from. It's your body and your body deserves the best.
So now finally onto my third conch piercing experience. I don't know if I already talked about this or not, but my first conch, my left one that I got early April was pierced at a really sharp, weird angle. I wanted it straight and assumed it was going to be straight, but when I hopped off the piercing table and took a look at it, I was shocked with what I saw. I couldn't believe the weird angle it was pierced at. It did not look like what I was expecting, but I figured I could deal with it, and kept it in for a few weeks. And then it got the dreaded bumps (hypertrophic scars) and I knew it was because of the angle, so when I went and got my other conch changed to a bar, I had this one taken out with the intention of repiercing it. So two weeks later once the piercing had closed, I was searching online for good studios in my area, since I figured it'd be best to try somewhere different and I found a place called Dungeon Tattoo and Body Piercing down here in Orlando, Fl. I am so thankful I found them because they are awesome!
I walked in and was greeted by the girl who would be piercing me, Monica. She was so sweet, patient, and really knew what she was talking about. Right away she made me feel at ease. I told her about my previous conch piercings and she took a look at the one I already had, and searched for titanium that was close in color and found me a Blurple colored 3/8's 14g barbell which looked so cool. She put everything through the autoclave and then took my ID and gave me forms to fill out. After filling out the forms, she went over the aftercare just to make 100% sure that I knew how to take care of it, and then it came time to get pierced.
I was then led into this little piercing room and sat on the doctor's table type thing while she got everything together. Once everything was set up, she cleaned my ear and probably spent a good ten minutes marking it. I was so impressed with how much time and care she put into making sure my conches were going to turn out even. She could have just marked a dot and pierced it without trying to make them look even, so I am so thankful and appreciative of her taking the time to make them look as even as possible. Once we finally agreed on a spot, it was time for the piercing. I was trying to relax and not be nervous, but I was expecting this to hurt pretty bad since I had already had it pierced before. She had me laying down for this one which I was actually happy about, because it was much more comfortable then sitting up, and it gave me no chance to move while she was doing it.
Before I knew it, she was holding the needle up to my ear and was telling me to take a deep breath in and I remember thinking this is it, I can't back out now. And as I breathed out, she pushed it through...and it hurt. It definitely wasn't unbearable, and I didn't say anything or make any faces, but it was a really sharp pain. It honestly felt like having a sharp object shoved through your ear. I know that's not exactly descriptive, but that's really what it felt like, and that's the only way I can think of to describe it. It was quick though, and before I knew it, she had the bar in my ear and was screwing the balls on. When I got my conch pierced the first time, it was more of a dull ache as opposed to a sharp pain like this one was. I'd probably give my first conch a 3/10, my second one a 5/10, and this one a 6/10. Like I said it wasn't unbearable, but it did hurt. The thing about piercings though, is that the pain is instantaneous. It only lasts for a second literally, and then it goes away. So, if you're thinking about getting your conch pierced, I say go for it! I love having matching conches and love the way they look in my ears! And definitely check out Dungeon Tattoo and Body Piercing if you are in the Orlando area. I promise they won't let you down!
submitted by: Jadams101
on: 29 May 2012
in Conch Piercings
Studio: Dungeon Tattoo and Body Piercing
Location: Orlando, Fl