Belly Button Piercing

Belly button piercings are among the most popular cosmetic procedure. Following the aftercare instructions shown here will prevent you from having a complication or developing infection from your new piercing.

Also known as the umbilical dip piercing, navel piercing or belly button piercing ranks at the top of popular body piercings. The most common technique involves piercing the upper rim of the navel. Despite the name, the belly button or true navel is not actually being pierced. If you want a belly button piercing, the most important step is to find a reputable piercer. Some areas require a license and documentation of training that qualifies them as a certified trained piercer.

Procedures of Belly Button Piercing

Watch this short video to see an actual belly button piercing being performed by a skilled and trained piercing artist.

Here are the common steps for piercing the belly button:

  1. The piercing room must appear clean and smell clean. The chair should be clean and have either a disposable or washable covering.
  2. The piercing professional should wash his/her hands thoroughly before putting on a fresh pair of surgical gloves. A mask is optional.
  3. Your belly button will be prepared by using a surgical scrub to clean and sterilize the area inside and around the navel.
  4. Topical anesthetic may or may not be available.
  5. The piercing expert will grasp the skin and puncture with a surgical needle or puncture tool. Most commonly this will occur from just inside the opening of the navel and be directed towards your head. Mild pain is normal, but this part is relatively quick.
  6. The needle is replaced by your new belly button piercing.
  7. The area will be cleansed a final time and you are all set with your brand new belly button piercing.
  8. Avoid the temptation to touch or play with your new piercing.

Here is a video:

Cost of Belly Button Piercing

The following are a few must know facts about what affects the cost of belly button piercing:

  • One of the biggest cost is the material of the piercing is made out of. Options vary widely and consist of simple designs all the way up to very intricate and complicated works of art.
  • Several popular options include silver, gold, titanium and other metal alloys. The choice greatly influences the overall cost.
  • Like any purchase, shopping around is key. Prices vary from piercing artist to piercing artist. Do a bit of research and find yourself a reputable piercer who offers a good price.

Take into consideration the above information, bellybutton piercing cost on average between $40 and $100. The price is never fixed and be sure to negotiate. If you already have your own jewelry the cost should be less, around $30. No matter what you decide, be sure that a reputable and licensed piercing salon does your piercing.

Risks of Belly Button Piercing

The two most common risks of the belly button piercing are infection and scarring. Naval piercing takes a long time to heal and if proper care of the wound is not taken, it may get infected. Most commonly an abscess is formed but the infection may spread if left untreated. Improper healing of the wound may result in scarring and sometimes even keloid formation.

Other less common risks are excessive bleeding, pain and allergic reactions to the metal in the jewelry. You may get infected with transmittable diseases such as HIV or hepatitis through unsterilized needles.

Young teenagers (age less than 16 years) should avoid getting naval piercing. The growth of the body may alter the position of the piercing and it may move upwards.

Aftercare of Belly Button Piercing

Think of your piercing as minor surgery. The healing timeframe varies from person to person, but on average takes several weeks. Some people heal slower than others and healing can take two or three months for some and much longer for others.

Follow these aftercare instructions closely to help speed up the healing process and minimize complications.

1. Things to Do

  • Wash with an Antibacterial Soap. There is always bacteria present on skin and washing with an antibacterial soap is a great way to prevent infection. Make sure you wash your hands before you begin to clean the newly pierced area. You can also use a Q-tip soaked in warm water or peroxide to remove any crust that might be around the piercing site.
  • Clean with Salt Water. Most bacteria hate saltwater and using this method is an excellent idea. That a small dash of salt into a cup of warm water. Invert this cup over the belly button and let it soak for about 10 minutes. Then rinse off and dry gently with a paper towel or soft cloth.
  • Apply Cotton Swabs. Instead of touching the area with your fingers use a cotton swab. Cotton towels harbor bacteria and should be avoided. Do not reuse cotton swabs and discard them after every single use.
  • Try Natural Healing Agents. Tea tree or lavender oil are powerful natural healing products and work rate bellybutton piercings. Emu oil is also been shown to produce great results and accelerate healing. Over-the-counter medications it containing vitamin C, vitamin D and zinc also speed the healing of bellybutton piercings.
  • Shower Instead of Bathing. Understand that shaving generates small fragments of hair that may become lodged in the piercing site. This undoubtedly will cause an infection. For this reason do not shave or washer your hair with a newly pierced bellybutton if using the bathtub. The best option is to use a shower. That way the water is constantly running and moving over the piercing site and your body. If you must use a bath, be sure to not use any bath oils or perfumed soaps as this will truly irritate the piercing site. Try shaving and washing your hair before you get in the bathtub.
  • Be Wary of Sleep Position. Most of us move around a lot while we sleep. Try to avoid rolling onto your stomach as this will guarantee the bellybutton piercing. Try cutting out some sheets or towels to force yourself to lie on your back. Another option is to sew a tennis ball to the front of your shirt at the chest level. This will undoubtedly keep you off of your stomach and avoid traumatizing the freshly pierced navel.
  • Watch for Infections. Classic signs of infection include redness, increased pain, warm and drainage. If the drainage is discolored such as yellow, green or has a bad odor it undoubtedly has become infected. If any of this occurs be sure to contact your piercer and also get in touch with your doctor. If the drainage is clear or a semi-opaque liquid is likely healing fine. A small amount of the bleeding is not uncommon and should not cause alarm.

2. Things to Avoid

  • Antibacterial Ointments. Antibacterial ointment clog pores and trap excessive moisture and inhibits healing. Some people are allergic and highly sensitive to the over-the-counter antibacterial ointment components.
  • Changing the Jewelry. Resist the temptation to change the jewelry. This may cause the piercing track to close prematurely. Forcing the jewelry back into the piercing track will traumatize the tissue and greatly impair healing or generate excessive scaring.
  • Swimming. Swimming pools, hot tubs and lakes are teaming with bacteria. Avoid exposing your piercing to this type of water. If you must get wet, be sure to use a waterproof bandage.
  • Skin Care Products. Suntan lotion and skincare products will also clog pores in confutation around the piercing area.
  • Alcohol and Peroxide. Try to avoid alcohol and hydrogen peroxide as both will dry out the skin. The peroxide may actually have a corrosive effect on the metal and impair wound healing.
  • Tight Clothing. Tight fitting garments will irritate and aggravate the piercing site, further delay healing and increase the chance of infection and a bad cosmetic appearance.
  • Touching. Resist the temptation to touch or play with the piercing. The only time it should be manipulated is during the cleaning process. Always wash your hands before beginning the cleaning process of your new belly button piercing.


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