Oral piercing aftercare


Lip piercings can look healed externally quite fast, but tend to swell up a bit more than piercings in other areas.
Most of the swelling will go down after 3-5 days but your piercing still wont be able to be changed for at least 2 weeks.
You can take some ibuprofen for the swelling, but make sure you are safe to take it and that you do not exceed the daily recommended dose.
Ibuprofen is good for tongue piercing swelling.   
To clean your new piercing we strongly recommend that you use a 0.9% sterile saline solution spray like Neilmed piercing aftercare/wound wash. 
This is a sterile saline solution fine mist spray, which we stock at Bloody Marys. 
You will need to clean your piercing twice a day.
This might sound like a lot of work, but if you follow our instructions it will take you almost no time at all and your healing time will be reduced dramatically.
    • Make sure your hands are clean before cleaning your piercing, never touch your new piercing with dirty hands and certainly don’t pull it or twist it
    • Spray your Neilmed straight onto your new piercing, holding the can about 15cm away from the piercing. You can hold the can at any angle 

    • Take a clean, dry piece of kitchen roll or cotton bud and pat the piercing and area around it dry, do not rub (don’t use toilet roll or tissue as they have lots of fibres and can get into your new piercing which will cause problems)

    • The drying part is just as important as the cleaning. Any residual moisture left around the new piercing will become stagnant, cause irritation, collect bacteria and is one of the more common causes of piercing bumps

    • For an inner oral piercings, tongue/tongue webbing/smiley we suggest you use a non alcoholic mouthwash twice a day, please see our tongue piercing aftercare for full directions

TONGUE, tongue webbing, smiley

Tongue aftercare is very different from your other piercings because your tongue is a muscle you use all the time, talking eating etc.
You need to take very special care of your tongue piercing, if you take good care of it you should be able to come and get it changed after 4 weeks, sometimes you will be able to change the jewellery after 2 weeks, so if you feel like it is ready to change or the bar is too long and getting in the way of your eating because the swelling has gone down, come into the studio and we will be able to see if you can change your jewellery sooner.
To clean tongue piercings use a non alcoholic mouthwash twice a day.
You can also repeat this step after you eat to help clean any of the food away that might get stuck around the jewellery.
You can just add this step to your daily toothbrushing routine.
You should get a new toothbrush to clean gently around the piercing so you don’t transfer any old bacteria and then throw it out once your piercing has healed.
Don’t try to stick your tongue out or roll it around your mouth or put it under any strenuous pressure while its healing because it will hurt, take longer to get the swelling down and you could end up harming yourself.
You will need to eat slightly different foods, and treat your mouth differently while your tongue piercing is healing.

Things to Avoid

Stay away from the items in this list until the swelling has gone down:

  • Chillies and other spicy foods

  • Acidic fruits and juices/drinks – lemons, oranges, grapefruit, pineapple, tomatoes etc

  • Steak or tough meats

  • Very importantly, you must stay away from alcohol on the same day and the first few days after you have had your tongue pierced as alcohol thins your blood and you may be paying less attention to your new piercing, and rip or tear it which will result in heavy bleeding and you will have to be taken to A&E

  • Chewing gum

  • Crisps or other sharp/crunchy salted snacks

  • You should avoid kissing etc as the bacteria from your partner might infect your open wound and come on, its just not pleasant! 


You should stick to soft bland foods while your tongue piercing is still swollen, like:
    • Mashed potatoes
    • Ice cream!!! Which can ease the pain and swelling, and is very soothing  

    • Yogurt 

    • Cold apple sauce 

    • Jelly

    • Soups 

    • Soft noodles and ramen (make sure its not spicy!)
When the swelling has gone down after a few days you can return to more solid foods but make sure you cut it into smaller pieces to avoid discomfort. 
Once your tongue piercing has healed you will able to go back to eating everything you used to with no problems.
This will come around quicker for you if you stick to the softer bland foods while its swollen and not just try to force yourself to eat more difficult foods before your piercing is healed.