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Infected Nose Piercing, How to Treat & Clean Nose Piercing Infection

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Nose piercing has been around for a long time and the popularity of the practice continues to rise. Unfortunately, it are often vulnerable to infections. So, how do you treat nose piercing infections? Continue reading to learn about the treatment options for piercing infections as well as the cleaning procedure for infected piercings? 

Cause of Nose Piercing Infection

Infected Nose Piercing –How to Treat & Clean Nose Piercing Infection
A piercing with infection

Unlike nose and navel piercing which is done on flesh and fatty tissues, nose piercing involves sticking a needle through cartilage. This makes it take relatively longer to heal and this coupled with the high amount of bacteria typically found in the nose makes this piercing particularly vulnerable to infections. People also tend to touch newly  pierced noses frequently and this can easily introduce bacteria, leading to an infection.

Signs of Infected Nose Piercing

Some common symptoms and signs of infected pierced nose tenderness, excessive pain, prolonged bleeding, pus, excessive redness, and hot feel in the affected area.

How to Treat Infected Nose Piercing or How to Heal Infection

Infections may occur in the course of the healing phase after you have had your nose pierced. This might be avoided by ensuring stringent aftercare measures such as washing your hands thoroughly before touching the piercing, and cleaning the area with saline water.

Nose Piercing Infection Pictures - 2
Infection around the piercing

So, how do you treat a nose piercing infection if it occurs for whatever reason? Treating an infected piercing basically rolls down to cleaning the area around the piercing, removing the infected materials and using heat to enhance blood circulation and stimulate the body’s immunity. Antibiotics may also be prescribed depending on the degree of the infection.

Cleaning the infected it generally involves removal of the dried debris such as dead body tissues, dirt, and pus around the the piercing.

Moist heat helps in healing of infected piercing. This involves using a hot salty-water press against the infected area (see the “a section on cleaning your piercing” section below).

No matter how painful the infection is however, the jewelry should not be removed (unless instructed by a doctor) as this may make the wound to close up leading to an abscess. This is an infection that is trapped beneath the skin and is characterized by pain and swelling.

If the above treatment options for piercing infection don’t heal it, antibiotics may be necessary. This is especially the case if the infection has moved beyond the immediate area around the piercing. This is referred to as cellulitis and results when the body fails to wall-off the infection that results after piercing your nose.

Infected Nose Piercing –How to Treat & Clean Nose Piercing Infection - Tea Tree
Tea tree can be helpful in heading a piercing that is infected.

Antibiotics will in most cases help to heal the nose piercing infections, but should the symptoms persist, it is also a great idea to seek the attention of your doctor. Although rarely, the doctor may recommend the removal of the an infected altogether, or even cut off the tissues around the infected area in order to facilitate healing of the nasal piercing infection.

Treating Nose Piercing Infections, More things to consider

  • Avoid tugging on the jewelry
  • Change the bed sheets that come into contact with the piercing daily
  • Avoid sleeping on your piercing
  • Consider placing a clean t-shirt on the pillow as you sleep
  • Ensure proper nutrition and balanced diet
  • Avoid alcohol and smoking (as hard as this could be, it helps to speed up the healing process)

How to Clean an Infected Nose Piercing

Infected Nose Piercing –How to Treat & Clean Nose Piercing Infection - Cleaning
Daily cleaning

Cleaning an infected piercing on the nose is usually easy and can be doesn’t require you to go back to the piercing service provider. Here is a brief guideline on how to clean an infected nose piercing:

Clean your hands

This is important in order to prevent a transfer of germs and bacteria into the piercing from dirty hands. Use an antibacterial soap and how water to wash your hands before drying them with a clean paper towel. You should avoid using an ordinary cloth towel since it often harbors germs and bacteria.

Clean the piercing

To a clean cotton swab, apply a small amount of antibacterial soap (a drop or two) and use it to clean the area around the piercing by swabbing it around gently. This helps to soften the area and get rid of any dry scabs.

Infected Nose Piercing –How to Treat & Clean Nose Piercing Infection - How to Treat
How to treat

Once done, use a cotton swab soaked with a little warm water to rinse the nose before drying it with a clean paper towel. Ensure that you don’t tug on the jewelry as you do this.

You should avoid using harsh substances such as Hibiclens, alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, Betadine, and over-the-counter creams since these can slow down the healing process.  Antibacterial soap is enough to clean the infected piercing.

Heat press with saline water

Add a pinch of sea salt to a 5 oz paper cup filled with hot water. Shake thoroughly and soak a clean cotton wool into the resulting solution. Squeeze the cotton wool to remove any excesses before pressing it gently on the pierced area. Leave it pressed against your nose until it cools off. Repeat the process for five minutes and then rinse the area with some warm water (to get rid of the salt) before patting it dry with a paper towel.

Nose Piercing Infection Pictures - 4
Image of an infected nasal piercing

That is how to clean an infected piercing on the nose. It is advisable that you repeat the procedure twice every day until the infection goes away.

Nose Piercing Infection Pictures or Images

Is my nose piercing really infected? The symptoms highlighted above will usually tell a normally healing piercing from an infected one. The following infections may also give you an insight to help you decide if it the high time you get a round of antibiotics or seek the attention of your doctor.

Infected piercing on your nose sucks! But that shouldn’t keep you from getting a a piercing on your nose if it tickles your fancy.

It is our sincere hope that this guide has shared some useful tips to help you avoid and treat nose piercing infection if they occur.

Posted Comments [64]

  1. I got a noise piercing it’s being a week but now I have fever and cough could that mean I have serious infection help

    Reply
    • Unless you have some symptoms on your piercing site such as redness, aching pain, swelling, discharge, bleeding or an infected nose piercing bump, the symptoms you have might not be related to your piercing. Otherwise, you are having a normal cold which should clear up.

      Reply
  2. I had my nose pierced about a week ago and it is still swollen. It’s not tender and I dont see any redness. Is this normal?

    Reply
    • The swelling should have reduced by now. However, if you do not have any other symptom, it should be fine. Ensure you keep the aftercare routine especially cleaning it using saline or piercing solution, avoid touching it and if possible, you can give it a warm or cold compress

      Reply
  3. I got my nose pierced about 4 months ago. The dreaded bumb came after a few weeks of piercing. I have been doing the salt water twice a day with a qtip. now it is red and sometimes bleeds when I clean it with the qtip. I have tried the crushed aspirin paste a few times and left it on overnight which sometimes helps. how can I get rid of it?
    is it safe to use a anti septic wash like the one from band aid or simply saline? I have never used dial or any anti bacterial soap because im scared it will irritate it more. please help!!

    Reply
    • Your piercing is infected. Try diluted tea tree oil. It works magic in clearing the bump that has developed. Any antibacterial agent will be fine since the most likely cause of your infection is bacteria. Avoid rubbing alcohol since it can cause scarring.

      Reply
  4. I got mine pierced 3 weeks ago and my nose looks most like the last “Image of an infected nasal piercing” but more around the bottom with pus. Everything was great until last night and today it just decided to blow up and pus!!! I use the H2OCEAN sterile saline spray and I will try the chamomile tea soak but it gets cold so quick. I’m so worried I got it done cheaply, used an earring gun with a regular earring so it has a butterfly backing… i know that’s stupid but I got this piercing on such impulse. Can I change the stud to a sterling silver one until my surgical steel one comes in? i think the prob would be bc of the earring that’s in my nose. HELP PLEASE

    Reply
    • When piercing, always go for a needle and not a gun. Secondly, I would advice you see your piercer or a health care professional to see the extent of infection. He or she will be in the best position to recommend a best way forward. On changing your jewelry, it is ok since the some jewelry material tend to cause allergic reactions. If you can, gold would be best!. It is a fact that you have an infected nose piercing which needs to be treated urgently. Consider diluted tea tree oil. It has give positive results to many people.

      Reply
  5. I got mine pierced back in august 2014(10 months) and its been infected since then ,i got pierced with a surgical steel hoop and i clean it with sea salt soak .the bump looks like a pimple and it does not go away, im thinking about changing to a titanium stud since im afraid its because of the hoop itself(might be having alergic reaction and the hoop moves around) what should i do?when i went to my piercer she said its because im not 18 yet so hormones and stuff. when i leave the piercing alone the bump is gone and alittle noticeable,like its a scar and not a 3d bump- im really hopeless and i cant have a septum piercing until my nose piercing is healed.so what should i do? will changing my piercing will be helpful?and how will i clean it?

    Reply
  6. I had my nose re pierced about 2 months ago, the last time was 4 years ago. It was going well until two weeks ago, it’s really infected which is why I took it out in the first place, the bump keeps coming and going but I’m not doing anything different in my routine. I’m worried please can you help?

    Reply
    • Any piercing can be infected even after it has healed fully. Ensure you are not allergic to the jewelry you are using, keep proper hygiene always, try cleaning with tea tree oil since it can clear the bump faster.

      Reply
  7. I got my nose pierced last year for my birthday (Oct). I’ve cleaned it two times a day. A couple weeks ago there was a bump growing and I’ve been cleaning it more now that i have a bump on my piercing. what should I do now?

    Reply
    • By now, your nose piercing should have almost healed completely. Try applying diluted tea tree oil and continue cleaning it with saline or sea salt water mixture. I would also recommend you use a steel or gold jewelry since they are very unlikely to cause allergic reactions.

      Reply
  8. I got my nose pierced on Tuesday and it doesn’t hurt at all only when I move my nose. The pain isn’t tense at all. My stud keeps sinking inside my nose and I’m pretty sure its because of my nose being swollen. Today it sunk in so much that I had to put tissue under it to push it up. I need to know what can I do to make the swellness go down. Im not changing my stud at all until its completely healed. And I clean around my stud 3 times a day with alcohol and i find yellowish crust around my stud. Is that normal? Its not bleeding but I did find a little bit of white puss yesterday.

    Reply
    • I got my nose pierced 3/4days ago and my nose is so swollen that my stud has sunk in and its really sore when i touch it other wise its fine . I hve a dry blood crust thing around the stud . It looks infected like the pictures but not sure?!

      Reply
      • That might be normal healing since its only a third or fourth day. Crusting is a normal part of healing. Continue cleaning it with saline solution and do not touch it. If it does not improve or the symptoms you have worsen, it could be an infection. Also, ensure the jewelry used is not too short.

        Reply
  9. Comment:hi
    got my nose pierced 4months ago,ts been fine not until 2days ago.i tried changiing my nose stud to a hoop bt i was finding t difficult to fix d hoop so i gav up nd put back d stud.eva since i tried that i hav been feeling pains then i tried takin out d stud to clean only for t to start bleeding.bleeding from inside nd out.i cleaned t nd tried putin d stud back by realised d inside was swolen nd d hook holdin d stud woudnt fit anymore.plz wat shuld i do? nd does dat mean i hav an infection?

    Reply
  10. I got my nose pierced Sunday.. now its hurting a little but I have some gooey stuff around it! Is it normal?

    Reply
  11. I’ve had my piercing just under a month. Yesterday it was a little swollen and red and slightly painful. I woke up this morning and it is even more swollen, red and painful but now there is yellow puss around the piercing. I cleaned the piercing and now it is bleeding. Should I see a doctor?

    Reply
  12. I got my nose pierced about a month ago maybe more but it got infected. I can’t take it off its all red and it looks like pimple I know that’s not normal so I don’t know what to Do since it says not to take it out.

    Reply
  13. I’ve had my nose pierced 3 months ago and it was fine no keloid but, this morning I woke up with redness around it feels swollen, and tender, but no clear, green, yellowish not pus coming out, does it mean it’s infected? I am cleaning it with antibacterial soap (dial) and should I use the hot-cold compress?

    Reply
  14. I’ve had my piercing for 3 months, it was fine, no keloid, all was fine. But then I woke up this morning with redness around my piercing, it’s sore, tender, but I’m not touching it, but I used a q tip to see if there’s any pus, and there’s nothing, no clear, green, yellowish, brown pus, no nothing. Does it mean it’s infected?.

    Reply
  15. It’s been about 2 weeks since I pierced my nose, today I noticed it’s a little swollen all around the stud and a little red, it doesn’t hurt or anything but I was wondering if that’s how the infection starts ?

    Reply
  16. I got my nose peirced in June and didn’t get a bump till mid July. At first I thought it was a keloid but then I started to see a little bit of puss come out. I went to the doctors, since I developed a throat infection as well which by the way I don’t think had to do with the peircing. When I showed the doctor he said it was infected and told me to take it off. I don’t want to take it off since my peircing doesn’t hurt at all I received no fever from it and it does not look severe. I’m also scared to take it off and have my peircing close with the infection inside. Should I wait it out one more week to see if it gets better with the antibiotics the doctor prescribed or immediately take it off?

    Reply
  17. I’m so annoyed. My nose ring has been there for TWO years. And yday morning, I woke up and it was swollen to the point where my ring looked like it was swallowed up.

    Reply
    • I’ve had mine done 2.5 years and about a month ago changed it from a hoop to a stud and it’s been infected since. Thought it was finally healing up as yesterday the skin had healed and the swelling was gone right down. Woke up this morning the same as you- looked like my nostril was trying to swallow the stud. So frustrating!!! I can’t change back to the hoop (which I loved!) cos I have a job now where I’m not supposed to have facial piercings, barely getting away with the stud as it is. 🙁 after over 2 years you’d think it would be healed!

      Reply
  18. I got my nose pierced 2 months ago, I tugged it by accident in my sleep and woke up to crust and a bump around it… It doesn’t hurt, there’s no puss comin out from it and I don’t feel sick. It’s not sore to touch…. Is it infected? Or is it a sign that it’s still healing? I clean it perfectly 2 times a day just like my piercer told me to do. Any advice is much appreciated 🙂

    Reply
  19. I got my double nose piercing about 3 week ago and i wke up today with it being all swollen and sore? Anyone have an idea how i can get this away before september?!!

    Reply
  20. i just had my nose pierced , other then saline water is there any other ways ? can any tea tree oil can be use example , from body shop?

    Reply
  21. Ive had my nose peircing for about 6 weeks and its been infected for about 2 its really raw flesh around the peircing and gets crusty ive cleaned it with warm water and salt and the cleaning solution i was give afte i got it done but still nothing is working ? Is there anything that works faster or bettrr

    Reply
  22. Comment:i pierced my nose almost 1 mnth bck bt stil the swollen has not decreased… its pain a lot when touched

    Reply
  23. I’ve had my nose pierced for about 3 months – and everything was fine until about a week ago. It doesn’t have a bump, but it’s crusty all around the piercing and has clear/yellowish liquid coming out of it. What do I do??

    Reply
  24. I recently wanted to take my nose ring out so I asked my boyfriend to help me with it and long story short we couldn’t get it out and it got stuck. Then we went to a piercing parlour and they told me not to remove the ring as I’ve got a small infection and it might get worse if I take it out so I left it in there. About 8hours later I noticed that only one side of the ring is in the hole and the other out, I wiggled it a bit and the nose ring just came out so I cleaned it with rock salt and hot water and I thought I’d put back in the stud i had when I done the piercing but I couldn’t get it in as it seems like one side is already healed close and I need to force it through but it really hurt so I didn’t push it. Now I’m really scared my nose will get a really bad infection with abscess. What should I do? I’ll keep cleaning it with the salt water but should I try to push the stud through again? Or just leave it and hope for the best?

    Reply
  25. I have had my nose piercing for about 2 years now. I recently changed the stud as I lost my other one. I was advised that the stud was 14 carot gold and would not lead to infection.
    I cleaned it and my piercing as well, 3 days later, it is all red at the site and is tender and a little pussy. Why does this keep happening? Any one else experience this?

    Reply
  26. I got my nose pierced 1 month ago & I got a bump 2 days ago. Yesterday it was filled with puss & when I woke up this morning the puss was gone & it seemed to shrink. I cleaned it normally & soaked it in salt water & in a matter of hours it looks like a piece of tissue is sticking out. I put peroxide on it & neosporin on it but it’s very red and nasty. Is there anything else I can do to speed up the healing process?

    Reply
  27. I got my nose pierced 3 weeks ago and it’s not inflamated or very painful, but it will NOT stop bleeding. It’s not a lot of blood but it just sort of pools arount my stud. It looks so gross! Help me please.

    Reply
  28. I got my nose pierced in October, it isn’t completey healed but does great with just my L shaped stud in. I put in a nose hoop and it gets sore, and infected (not bad looking more feeling) and swells around the hoop. I’m afraid I won’t be able to change it back but keeping it in will make it worse. Do I clean and change it back safely and quickly, or not change it back? I’ve done this before and the same thing happens I’m just not sure if I should try to heal it with the hoop in or leave it out until my piercing is completely healed ??

    Reply
  29. I for my nose pierced about 4 weeks ago it didn’t hurt when I got it but now it it hurts I’ve cleaned it with antibacterial soap with a qtip and also warm water I swear on my nose when I’m hot and I still clean it afterward now it looks like a small bump is coming in the top of my nose where its pierced what should I do

    Reply
  30. I had gotten my nose pierced in January around the 11th. I had a stud. Then in February around the 20th or something it got infected, when it got infected it ripped a little bit so the stud kept going inside my nose. I switched to a ring/hoop and it helped a lot and it finally started healing (every day about a spek of yellowish puss comes out). Now this morning Iwoke up with it tender, and swollen. But it looks soooo healed. CCouldit be infected again? It just hurts and nothings coming out.. I cleaned it with soap and tried making the swelling go down with cold water.

    Reply
  31. I repierced my nose and today i seen my nose piercinq was gettinq a bump so i toke it out cleaned it with alcohol and hydrogen peroxide and puss started coming out with blood idknwhat to do now . Now It Started to get white and im scared ckuz i cleaned it with salt water and it keeps pm growinq?

    Reply
  32. I got my nose pierced May 1. May 7 I had to go back and get a bigger stud because of swelling. May 14 it fell out and I couldn’t get it back in. I went back and they gave me a hoop. Now it’s the 17th and I think it’s infected. It’s swollen, throbbing, and had discharge. What should I do?

    Reply
  33. I got my piercing done 5 Weeks ago and last night it started swelling up my piercing is still in my nose but it’s not all the way in because of the swelling what do I do PLEASE HELP ME

    Reply
  34. I had my piercing for about a month and just today I noticed a bump and it started bleeding. Is this a sign of infection? What do I do about it?

    Reply
  35. I had my piercing for about a month and today I noticed a bump and it started bleeding. Is this a sign of an infection and how do I treat it?

    Reply
  36. I got my nose pierced almost a month ago. It doesn’t hurt, there is like an open wound around the stud and a little bit of pus comes out occasionally. I’m not sure if this is normal because it healing or what. However, sometimes when I take off my glasses it snags a my stud. I do clean it two times a day with this bacteria spray and a qtip.

    Reply
  37. I had my nose pierced three weeks now with an ear pin I don’t feel pain,it’snt red but it brought pus today yet I always clean it with saline water and have a gray Mark around the piercing what should i do now ?I need help am scared !

    Reply
  38. I hadon’t my nose piercing late October 2015 it started swelling up two weeks after the piercing I thigh it was keloid and used tea tree oil afterwards, he was releasing pus sometimes in January the swelling reduced for few days. After which it was swollen again I went to see a doctor how advised I remove the jewellery but I don’t because I’m afraid the piercing may closeup. However, I did the sea salt water solution. At the moment is really swollen inside and redish. I pressed it and some pus mixed with blood stains was released. What can I do?

    Reply
  39. I got my noes pierced about a week ago I’ve been cleaning it 3 times a day and I’ve been very careful with it. I changed my stud because it was irritating and I put in a ring. Ever since I got the piercing it’s been swollen and red now it’s still swollen and red but a clear discharge comes out sometimes and it is hard and I only feel pain sometimes.

    Reply
  40. I have a nose piercing and it has cartilage just out of the nose. Whenever i clean it, puss comes out. Please help

    Reply
  41. So I got my nose pierce 4 months ago, but after one month of getting pieced I stated to get a lump on my nose that lasted almost 3 months my friends told me to use neosporin and it worked in 2 days my numb was gone for about 2 weeks and now I removed the pierce to clean and I had a hard time getting it out. And I woke up with my nose really infected and it’s getting worse as the day go. Now I have pus coming out and don’t really hurt I been soaking with chamomile tea and sea salt water I don’t know what to do I just want this to be good already

    Reply
  42. I got my nose pierced 5 days ago and its still red and crust forms around it is it normal? I’m just scared of infection.

    Reply
  43. I got my nose pierced 5 days ago and it is still red and forms crust around it is this normal? I’m just worried about infection.

    Reply
  44. I’ve had my nose pierced since July 4, 2017. It’s never been infected and I take good care of it. This past week, I had to remove my piercing for an hour on Thursday and an hour on Friday to perform in a cheerleading competition. I struggled to get the stud back in but I got it in after a few tries. Now, it’s starting to get crust around it, and it’s been red and sore since Thursday when I first tried putting it back in. When I put it back in both times, the metal was clean and so was the area of the piercing. Infection or just irritation?

    Reply
  45. I got my nose pierced about 4 months ago it is still red and tender and I took it out to change it to a different sutd when I took it out a lot of pus came out and it is now really tender. what do I do?

    Reply
  46. I had my nose pierced since March and since yesterday it is a little red and a little of puss is coming out. It doesn’t hurt or isn’t swollen and I have been cleaning it daily with warm water, and don’t know what it would be cus I have never had this problem, any suggestions?

    Reply

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