There are so many piercings out there that you can have, and as body modifications have grown in popularity, you can get almost any part of your body pierced now. However, one of the old favorites of many people is the belly button piercing.
They are without a doubt one of the coolest piercings you can get.
However, although they are cool, look amazing, and can give you that body confidence boost you always needed, they can come with complications, and you have to look after them properly.
They are one of the easiest piercings you can remove yourself, mainly because you do not need a mirror to do so, but you can only remove the piercing once it has properly healed.
The healing process of this piercing, or indeed any piercing, will be different for everyone, but the average is around three to four weeks.
Once your piercing has healed up, you can unscrew it.
But do not think that this means you will be issue free. You can find some belly bars will be tightened too much and not want to come undone, or you can get a piercing stuck to your skin.
If you do have any major issues then you can always seek the help of a professional. There is nothing wrong with going back to your piercer and asking for them.
These issues are not life-threatening, of course, but you can exacerbate the issue if proper care is not taken. For example, you could tear your skin, or strain the piercing itself.
If you have a new piercing or if you are planning on getting one, and you are worried about the issues with removing your belly button piercing, read on.
We are giving you a detailed guide on all you need to know so that if you come across an issue with your piercing, you know exactly what to do.
How Do You Unscrew A Belly Button Ring In The First Place?
How you unscrew your belly button piercing depends on the piece of jewelry itself, and the position it is in.
Typically, you can unscrew it from the bottom, although there are many which will unscrew from the top as well.
Whichever end unscrews, gently hold onto the end that should remain stationary as you unscrew the other end.
Before you start unscrewing your piercing, you need to ensure your hands are clean, wash them carefully to prevent any germs coming into contact with the piercing as this could lead to infection.
This is absolutely imperative for a new piercing as well. Your piercing is the last place you want an infection to occur.
Before you remove your belly button piercing, give it a gentle jiggle to ensure that it is moving freely inside the piercing hole. If it struggles to move, consider why.
If your piercing is new, it might be a bit crusty, give it a clean if this is the case. Using warm sterile salt water is the best way to clean it.
Tea tree oil is also often used as a lubricant for new piercings too, but it is not a cleaner.
If your piercing is stiff in its hole then try both of these to clean and lubricate it and if you are still struggling contact a professional in the piercing industry. Most importantly, never, ever pull on it.
Similarly, so not shift it around aggressively either, as it can irritate the skin and aggravate any issues you may have with it.
At the top of the piercing, there will be a screw-on ball that keeps it in place. Once you have located this, start to tenderly unscrew it while you hold the ring in place.
It is possible that it may appear to be on the inside/ underneath, however this is rare and more often than not it is at the top of the bar.
You can start by unscrewing the ball from the bottom part, and while you do this, slide the ring, and pull it out gently. This will allow for a smooth removal, but remember, be gentle.
It is possible that it may not come out all that easily, and this is when you should try to wash it and lubricate it gently and carefully.
If you still struggle, seek out the help of a professional.
Once you have successfully removed your belly button piercing, you need to clean your belly button with warm water and rubbing alcohol wipes to sanitize the region. You should also sanitize and sterilize the jewelry too to kill off any germs.
It may seem a bit difficult to do this, especially if you have large hands or thicker fingers, as it is delicate work.
Just remember when you unscrew any piercing to stick to the rule of thumb ‘righty tighty, lefty loosey’.
This applies to pretty much everything, piercings included. To tighten, screw the ball to the right-hand side, and to loosen, screw it to the left-hand side.
If you forget, simply remember ‘righty tighty, lefty loosey’, and you will be golden.
The Ring Is Stuck To My Skin, What Do I Do?
It is entirely possible that your belly button piercing can get stuck to your skin. This will only really happen in the case where an infection is present or if there is swelling in the area.
If you notice that the jewelry is stuck to your skin, you should leave it be and let it heal until the infection and swelling subsides.
If you notice this two months after getting the piercing done, you might be able to remove it. It all depends on how long past the healing stage you are.
The longer you’ve had the piercing, the less cautious you need to be.
For example, if it is stuck to your skin after 6 years of having it, you will be used to the piercing and know what to do, you will also be less prone to infection. However, a new piercing is more prone to infection, swelling, and problems.
You need to be very cautious when you are removing a belly button ring that is stuck to your skin, it is possible that you could end up ripping your skin by doing so.
If your piercing is new and it is stuck to your skin, you should go to see a professional at a piercing shop to remove it.
If you want to do it on your own, that is understandable, as doing this can help you understand how piercings work and how to best look after them.
However, you need to remember a few things to do so.
Firstly, you need a little relief, so you should wash your belly button with warm sterile water to help to clean it and allow for freer movement once your skin softens.
You could easily do this in the shower. This might help to free your belly button ring if it is stuck.
Now, dab some moisturizer or some hydrocortisone cream around the shaft or the piercing and all over the hole.
This can help to soften the local area and can assist in helping the piercing shift from your skin.
After this, shift it gently by sliding it slowly from left to right. If you can continue to do this smoothly, then keep on going until it removes itself fully.
However, if the area is swollen, then this could be potentially painful. This means you have to be sure to be as gentle as possible when moving it from left to right.
If you are not removing the piercing, then adjust it properly by placing the end outwards.
It is not uncommon for you to have to slide the piercing into your navel, this is usually the case if it has a bar side.
Doing this, you can now unhook the ring that secures the piercing. If the ball is stuck as well, you can remove it with the pliers.
However, if you do end up using pliers, be very, very careful and gentle as you do so.
If you do happen to have an infection, you need to remove the piercing and apply an anti-inflammatory ointment on the area to reduce the infection.
If the infection is bad, and you cannot remove it, it is best to head on down to the piercing profession who did the piercing and ask for advice or if they can help you clean it and apply an anti-inflammatory.
If the infection gets worse despite help, consult a professional to find out what more you can do to heal.
In the case that despite all of this, you are still unable to remove the piercing, always refrain from tugging or pulling on it. If it simply will not come out, always ask a professional for help.
If you try to remove it too harshly then it will scrape at the skin and worsen an infection if you already have one, and if not it could cause swelling, or even cause an infection.
Aftercare sprays and skin sprays to help with aftercare are available online at a decent price.
Sprays such as H2Ocean Piercing Aftercare Spray, and BRIOTECH Topical Skin Spray are available online and can help you to care for your new piercing after it is done.
Is It Painful?
You might be wondering if getting a piercing and removing/ changing it is something that will hurt.
Well, the first time you get any piercing it will hurt, there will always be some pain as you are puncturing a hole in your body.
Your belly button is a very sensitive area anyway, although it is not as painful as other areas such as the top of your ears, as the belly button is purely flesh, whereas the ears contain cartilage.
Once you get a belly button piercing, and it is healed, you can change the piercing jewelry as much as you like.
It may be a little tender the first few times, but after that it should not hurt at all, although it may feel a little odd.
For some people, it does not hurt at all after, although this depends on how well it has settled in and healed up.
If you want to avoid pain as much as possible when you change your belly button jewelry for the first time, then it is advisable that you wait a good 3-4 weeks before you change it, giving it plenty of time to heal up fully.
Belly button piercings will take a good 6 months to heal entirely, so the longer that you wait before you change it, the less pain you are likely to experience.
It is not uncommon for people to find changing a belly button piercing painful, but if you are gentle, tender, and careful, you can always ensure a smooth removal and as little tenderness as possible.
Before you tough the area, always be sure to wash your hands with a bar of antibacterial soap. We do this to prevent any infection in the fresh piercing.
Any piercing is prone to infections, but belly buttons are more susceptible due to the skin folds in the area, and this can lead to further complications.
You should then clean the location area with a saline solution to prevent any bacteria from getting through the piercing site.
Once you have cleaned your hands and the piercing area, ensure you have your jewelry ready and adequately sanitized and sterilized.
To maximize the jewelry’s cleanliness, let it sit in rubbing alcohol for a while, then wipe it dry with a clean cloth.
If you are using sterilized or acrylic-based jewelry, then you may want to use an antibacterial soap instead.
Once this is disinfected, remove the old one carefully, be very careful and gentle, and do not forget ‘righty tighty, lefty loosey’.
Ensure that you slide the ball smoothly, and if you cannot do this, then this is a sign that your piercing still needs some healing time before you change it.
You might have to wait a few more days until you change the jewelry.
Give it as much time as possible if this is the case, it is better to wait longer to put your gorgeous new ring/ bar in than to end up with swelling or an infection.
Once you have managed to properly remove the original piercing jewelry, slide in the new one. Ensure to close it properly with the ball, so it is secure.
Many will have a curved feature, so if this is the case, make sure it sits properly in place.
If you do all these things, you will be able to change your belly button jewelry perfectly and pain-free!
Belly button piercings can come with plenty of complications, but they are worth the pain. They look gorgeous and add a bit of glam to your midriff.
If you love your piercing, do everything you can to prevent it from getting infection, even if you have to deal with some swelling or infections, these are reversible if you handle it right.
Follow proper guidelines and do not be afraid to talk to professionals.
It is easy to unscrew or re-pierce your belly ring on your own, but it is wiser to see a professional as they will do it properly and will ensure it goes well.
Keep it clean and enjoy your bling.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which Way Does A Piercing Ball Unscrew?
Like almost everything that screws into or onto something, apply the rule ‘righty tighty, lefty loosey’.
This means that to tighten it, you screw towards the right, if you wish to loosen it then screw towards the left.
How Long Does It Take For A Belly Piercing To Close?
Fresh belly button piercings close quickly. If you have had one for years, it can close up in a few weeks, but for some it can take longer.
Clean the area regularly until it is fully healed and to keep the piercing for a long time, always have jewelry present in it.
When Should You Take Your Belly Ring Out When Pregnant?
If you become pregnant before your piercing heals completely, then you should remove it until after you have had the baby.
Pregnancy means many biological changes, these changes can interfere with the healing process.
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