We can all agree that not everyone is into lip piercings, and if you have lip piercings, you have already faced your unfair share of being judged wrongly.
But that is not what we are talking about today. Instead, we’ll look at the healing process for the lip piercing, how long it takes to heal, and what you need to know about a healing and/or a healed lip piercing.
This is the kind of information that would be helpful to anyone thinking of getting a lip piercing because it would be their ultimate guide towards proper care of their lip piercing and also a guide on what not to do.
So, let’s get right into it.
How do you know if your piercing is healing?
Anyone with a lip piercing is considered to be the coolest person on earth. But also, these individuals have had to ensure a great deal of pain, from the time they got the piercing and throughout the piercing’s healing.
Lip piercing is the type of body piercing penetrating the lips and/or the surrounding area, such as the philtrum, which is the tiny groove running from the Cupid’s bow right to the nose’s base. You can choose the placement of the lip piercing based on your preferred aesthetic.
Regardless of the type of lip piercing you get – there are about 14 types of lip piercings; the healing will vary. In most cases, the lip piercing will take between 6 and 8 weeks to heal fully; but there are cases where the lip piercing takes up to 6 months to heal fully.
Factors such as your diet, personal health, and also aftercare all affect the healing process.
You can tell if the lip piercing is healing by looking at the changes around the piercing. According to the experts, the first few weeks after getting your lips pierced are very crucial to the overall healing process because this is the time when the piercing re-epithelializes – this is the process that results in the creation of scar tissue that will seal the hole in the bacteria, preventing the breeding of bacteria.
What this means is that you will know that a piercing is healing if you notice the development of scar tissue. Also, when the area around the piercing starts to feel normal, when there is no redness, and when you notice a normal discharge seen from healing tissue, then it means that the lip piercing is starting to heal. Also, there will be less crustiness around the jewelry if the piercing he healing.
It’s also important for you to keep in mind that during the healing process, there will be some itchiness at the piercing site and also the release of a whitish-yellowish fluid around the area that isn’t pus; and this will form a coat around the jewelry. With time, and as the piercing heals, this discharge will reduce.
How do you know if your piercing is infected?
Essentially, the lip piercing is at a very high risk of infection because it is often in contact with different things, including food, drinks, makeup, and even bacteria from the mouth. Therefore, you’d have to take extra care of the piercing and pay attention, noticing even the slightest changes in and around the piercing.
These are the signs of an infected body piercing:
- The area around the piercing and the jewelry is swollen, hot, painful, very red or even dark, and just uncomfortable
- You feel hot, shivery, and just unwell
- There is pus or blood coming from the piercing. In most cases, the pus is white, yellow, or greenish
- The piercing area might also be smelly.
- The other things that point to an infected lip piercing include redness that doesn’t just want to go away, a burning sensation, or itching.
7 Signs Of A Healing Lip Piercing
Body piercings like lip piercings all go through 4 main stages of healing, and these stages will guide you on what to expect as your piercing heals.
These stages include:
This is the very first stage of healing for your lip piercing, and it’s more or less focused on stopping blood loss. This stage or process is why the piercing stops bleeding.
During the process of homeostasis, the red blood cells and also your platelets work to prevent further blood loss, even as the collagen fibers on the walls of the blood vessels activate the production of more platelets from the blood, forming a barrier that plugs up the pierced area stopping further bleeding.
This also stops pathogens from getting to the wound. The result of hemostasis is the formation of a scab that looks like dried-up blood around the piercing.
- Inflammatory Phase
This is also called the defensive stage. Here, there is the destruction of bacteria and the removal of all debris left in the wound.
The removed non-essential bacteria and debris will help to prepare the pierced area for new tissue growth, and the removal of the harmful bacteria means reduced risk of irritation or infection.
Once this is done, the macrophages set in to clear the debris like the damaged and the dead cells. Macrophages are also important because they secrete growth factors attracting more immune system cells and enhancing the repair of the tissue.
At the same time, the epidermis and the dermis work in tandem to close the wound, as the fibroblasts help in creating connective tissue that will close the wound.
You should also know that during this stage, the blood vessels’ permeability increases, and fluid accumulates around the wound. So, you may notice redness and soreness, as well as the discharge of a white-ish fluid, and there will be some swelling too.
- Proliferative Phase
In this phase, there is the formation of the granulation tissue as the fibroblasts make their way into the wound, contracting, and pulling in the outer edges of the wound towards the center, enhancing healing.
This is also the main reason why you shouldn’t remove your jewelry from the healing piercing too soon, especially when the piercing looks healed.
This is important because the exterior edges always heal before the center of the wound, and removal of the jewelry before complete healing would mean the closure of the hole, and re-inserting the jewelry would worsen things and even damage the delicate tissue forcing the healing process to restart.
The last healing stage for your lip piercing is the maturation stage. As long you don’t disturb the piercing, this stage is reached in about 6 months or, in other cases, a maximum of a year or 2 years.
Here, there are many changes and maturation of the tissue, as the piercing area closes, with the cells that were used in the healing and repair process no longer needed and are, as a result, removed or they die out. The maturation stage is different for everyone, and it takes a different timeline for everyone.
The good news is that the lip or the mucous membrane piercings heal faster than the cartilage piercings.
So, signs of the healing lip piercing are as follows:
- Scab on the piercing area
- Slight irritation or redness
- Discharge of a whitish fluid
- Slight swelling that goes away
- Tightening of the piercing site
- Loss of the scab
- No pain and irritation
How long should a lip piercing be sore?
The lip piercing could be sore for about 2-6 weeks, depending on how fast you heal.
As long as you follow the aftercare instructions provided and don’t disturb or take out the jewelry soon, the lip piercing will heal well within about 2 months, but it may even take up to 6 – 12 months.
As long as you don’t experience excessive redness, too much pain, and no colored pus, the lip piercing is healing well.
Stephanie is a jewelry lover when she was a teenager. Her major was fashion design when she was in college. She is a jewelry designer at SOQ Jewelry and other design companies. Now she is also a writer for our website. She writes a lot of designs&brands posts with very actionable tips.