An Industrial Sized Horror Story... With a Happy Ending
Ever since I was 13/14ish, I've always wanted an industrial. I mostly saw them on girls, but every time I saw one on a guy, I stared in awe cause they just looked so friggen awesome! I was young at the time though, and didn't want to go and get one since I figured my mom wouldn't be happy with the idea. The idea of me getting one eventually died down over a few years.
When I was 17, the summer came and I saw a guy with an industrial. It re-sparked my interest for one. I figured I was old enough to get one myself without my parent's consent (you need to be 16 in Ontario), so I looked into it a bit more. I read stories here on BME almost every night, and started contacting places around my area about prices. Some of the horror stories I read scared the crap out of me, but I thought as long as I took good care of it, it would be fine.
I finally made an appointment at a local place called Dragon's Den in Woodstock. I prepared myself by getting my hair cut beforehand (so the hair dresser wouldn't have to fiddle around with a freshly pierced ear anywhere in the near future), picking up a large box of q-tips, and buying a container of no-name antibacterial soap.
Once the day finally came, I was really nervous, which I think is normal. I have my left lobe pierced twice and one hole stretched to around a 10-gauge, so I had some experience with piercing. I also have no problems at all with needles, which I'm sure helped me a lot too. My parents also had no problem with it.
After I got off of work, I headed to my friend's house. There were four of my closest friends who wanted to be there to see me get a bar shoved through my ear, so I picked them up and drove to the piercing place. I walked in, and they had me sign a contract like usual.
By now, I was almost shaking. Dan led me to the chair where the piercing was to be done. My friends talked to him more than I did, I just wanted the thing to be done and over with. He cleaned my ear religiously and marked the spot where he was going to pierce it. He never showed me the placement, but I didn't say anything since I just wanted him to do it. He did the first hole, and it didn't hurt as much as I thought it would. There were no gross noises, just my friends behind me groaning. The second hole wasn't so pleasant. He was having a really hard time getting the needle through the top part of my ear, and his hand slipped at one point, which hurt. He eventually got the needle through, and put the bar in. He stopped the little bleeding there was, and then cleaned the fresh piercing. I must say this hurt more than the actual piercing itself.
Once it was all said and done, he led me to a mirror. I was awestruck, it looked totally awesome. My friends all thought the same thing, and were all still grossed out by what they just saw. I paid the guy, shook his hand, and went on my marry way.
The bar he put in was a snug fit, which was a bit of a problem. Since I had no bar to move, I had to scrunch my ear up on the bar to clean it. Since it was new, I had a hell of a time trying to clean it. I eventually gave up trying and only cleaned what I could.
The following two days were as expected. There was little swelling, but my ear was completely beat red. Sleeping was a problem at first, as I would wake up in the middle of the night with searing pain from rolling over onto my industrial. I put a towel over my pillow just incase it started bleeding, but not once did it bleed. There were a few things I had to get used to, like sleeping only on one side and making sure my shirts didn't get caught on it when I put them on. Drying hair with a towel also is a bit tricky at first, but you get used to it.
Three days after the piercing was when the real problems started. Since I could not clean it very well (which is the reason, I can only assume), my ear got infected. It started to swell up. The first day it started, it was only a moderate discomfort. The next few days, however, were anything but. My ear swelled up to such a point where it was almost engulfing the bar in the middle. This put pressure on the already snug bar, and you know what happens when you have pressure on a swollen area. The pain was close to unbearable. Pain shot down my ear, through my head and down my neck. I can honestly say that it was far more painful than the piercing itself. Advil became my friend, and it temporarily helped. I had to carry around some sort of cloth, because my ear would randomly discharge some green fluid. I tried salt soaks, cleaning, everything. The swelling never went down.
I was unsure what to do at that point. I wanted to keep it in, since I paid $42 for it and it looked cool. But at the same time, the pain was so horrible that I felt that my health was in danger. Four days after the swelling began, I was sitting in my room late at night because I couldn't sleep. I felt close to vomiting, when the room started spinning and I blacked out for about three seconds. As soon as I had my eyesight back, I felt that I had enough. I went to the bathroom with a pair of latex gloves and took the damned thing out. It hurt so much I was in tears, and I have a good pain tolerance. As soon as the pressure was relieved from my ear, it was almost instant pain relief. I showed my step-dad my ear, and he told me that if it wasn't better in two days he was taking me to the emergency room. He is a real "it's just a scrape" guy, so it scared me when he said this. He told me my ear was entirely purple, which came as a surprise to me. I am colour blind and I didn't re
alize how severe it actually was.
Over the next few days, the swelling eventually went down. I wanted to preserve the holes, so I put 2 of my other earrings in the holes. The holes were still open after that time, to my surprise. I left those in for a few days, and then took the risk of putting the bar back in. I managed to get it in, and it felt a lot better then it did before. The holes were healed better, and I could actually clean it. The redness eventually went away, and I was certain that my ear wasn't going to get infected again.
Its been three months since I put the bar back in, and my ear is healing wonderfully. I can actually sleep on it now, and there is just a slight bit of swelling on the top hole. I clean it once a day with anti bacterial soap and put some polysporin in it once a day as well, just to give it some lubrication.
If there is any suggestion I can give to anyone wishing to get one of these, I would STRONGLEY recommend that you get two separate rings in the holes first before you get the bar. I know some piercing places will only do this. I know the bar is cool and all, but trust me, you don't want to go through what I did. Two separate rings puts far less pressure on the holes and lets them heal much better than with the bar in there.
All in all, I am happy with my industrial. It looks amazing, and I couldn't be happier. I'd recommend getting it if you don't want something as racy as an eyebrow, but want something different at the same time. For anyone who is wishing to get one, good luck!
submitted by: Anonymous
on: 14 Dec. 2009
in Ear Piercing