Nipple and genital piercings: what to watch out for

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I piercing decorative are not a recent phenomenon: they belong to the history of man, including those to intimate parts, come i nipples e i genitals. The first ear piercings were in fact found in engravings and representations dating back to more than two thousand years ago in India, while it is known that the ancient Romans practiced infibulation, passing a ring through the foreskin, a first form of genital piercing. albeit for the purpose of inhibiting arousal.

In Western culture, piercing has not traditionally been as widespread due to religious beliefs. Until the seventies – eighties, when with the punk movement it became a act of rebellion, then a real one fashion.

Today, intimate piercings have become common ornaments in both men and women. By underwear, we mean piercings of the nipples, clitoral hood, inner and / or outer lips, perineum, penis, foreskin and scrotum.

Although there is an increase in the phenomenon and one always greater social acceptance of intimate piercings, there is one lack of literature on risks for associated health and any complications related to their practice.

The prevention complications is crucial. And one of the first forms is to go for piercings in a hygienic and sterile environment by a professional.

To prevent risks, you need to know them. Scientific research explains what they are “Complications associated with intimate piercings”, published in 2018 on the Dermatology Online Journal.

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Nipple piercing

Poorly executed nipple piercings can cause infectious and non-infectious complications. Among the latter, for example, the laceration of the area during contact sports. Also, in women, nipple stimulation can lead to galactorrhea (secretion of milky material outside the lactation period) and after the hyperprolactinemia. If so, removing the jewelry should normalize prolactin levels.

The rate of infection associated with nipple piercings is estimated to be around 10-20%, but actual numbers may be higher. The high incidence rate is partly related to the time of healing prolonged fabric, which can last from 6 to 12 months. This interval can be extended up to another 12 months if complications occur.

Nipple piercing related infection can present as: local infection, abscess or also endocarditis in high-risk patients. Symptoms of abscess can present with fever, hardening of the tissue, edema and erythema at the site of the piercing. If so, treatment of breast abscesses includes incision and drainage, then aspiration and antibiotic therapy.

Genital piercing

Genital piercings can also cause a number of infectious and non-infectious complications. In particular, they can serve as a can nidus for the proliferation of periurethral microflora or abscesses. In the latter case, the piercing should be left in place to prevent the introduction of additional bacteria, and treated with topical antibiotics. If the infection does not subside, then it must be removed. Like nipple piercings, genital piercings can also be used up to one year to heal completely. To protect the area from trauma and infection during the healing period, recipients should refrain from swimming pools, hot tubs, and unprotected sex two to four weeks after the piercing. To avoid one pregnancy, it is advisable to wear double condoms or extra-large ones to “accommodate” the bulk of the piercing, if done to the foreskin.

Complications for male genital piercings

The most common and widespread male piercing of the genitals is the Prince Albert, a ring placed at the end of the penis, and which goes to pierce the lower part of the glans, exiting the urethra. In the minority of cases, the complications related to this piercing can involve: rupture of the urethra, damage to the spongy body with consequent bleeding and difficulty in erection, nerve damage and infertility resulting from possible infections.

Complications for female genital piercings

The most common site for female genital piercing is the area surrounding the clitoris. Clitoral piercings can damage condoms or cause diaphragms to leak during sexual intercourse, resulting in an increased risk of pregnancy and sexual transmission of infections. Furthermore, even thenumbness of the clitoris can result from genital piercings. There pregnancy in the presence of piercings it is typically quiet, but these can increase the incidence of complications, regarding the navel, nipples and genitals. Complications associated with navel piercings during pregnancy can predict rejection and development of striae, resulting from the stress of breaking the connective tissue structure, as navel piercings go through all layers of the skin.


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