Conch piercing is said to be the least common type of ear piercing, it is soon gaining popularity because of its uniqueness. It is also known as shell piercing and is done by perforating the ear cartilage. There are actually two types of these piercings including inner piercing and outer piercing. The inner piercing is done on the middle of the ear (near the ear canal) whereas the outer piercing is done on the outer ear cartilage i.e., within the flat plane of the cartilage. The procedure of both are the same and hence, people who are interested in getting any of these piercings should know more about it.
If you have decided to get this piercing, the first thing you have to do is to find a professional and reputed body piercer. If you are still a minor, you will have to take your parent or guardian to sign the necessary documents. Make sure that the needle and the jewelry used are new ones or are sterilized thoroughly. Once you are sure with these details, only then agree to get the piercing done from that studio.
When you reach the piercing studio, the piercer will first see whether your ears are suitable or not. If she is sure, she will help you in choosing piercing jewelry which is usually a 12 - 14 gauge captive bead ring. You can also use a barbell in the place of ring, if the piercer permits. Make sure that jewelry is one that has a larger gauge i.e. thickness because wearing a smaller gauge earring can extend the healing process. Once you have selected the jewelry and paid for it, the actual piercing process would start. The piercer would ask as to which side you want to get the piercing. Then, she would clean the area well with alcohol swab or disinfectant. After this, she will mark the place where she is going to pierce and ask your opinion about it. If you are satisfied with the chosen place, she will secure your ears with a clamp and perforate the cartilage with a piercing needle. After this, she will insert the jewelry that you have chosen and your piercing is complete.
One of the reasons why most people do not get this piercing done is because they think that it is quite painful. However, piercing pain is not the same for everyone. While some say that the pain they experienced was too much, there are others who say that this piercing was not at all painful. However, people who have got this done also say that it is worth all the pain.
Healing and Aftercare
The best thing about it is that the chances of rejection or migration is very less in this case because there are ample tissues around it. However, the piercing is at such a place where it can get easily irritated and hence, the risk of infection is also higher. Hence, it is important to follow the aftercare instructions carefully to ensure rapid healing.
This piercing will take approximately 2 - 12 months to heal completely. However, it is the first fourteen days which are the most crucial of the total healing period. During this time, one should never touch the piercing except for cleaning. Even before cleaning the piercing, it is important to wash one's hands with antibacterial soap to avoid any kind of infection. The best way to clean the piercing is by soaking it in saline water at least twice a day. You may also have to change your sleeping positions and make sure that you do not sleep on the side where piercing is done. It is also for this reason that piercers do not recommend people to get piercings done on both their ears simultaneously. When one piercing has completely healed, you can think about the next one. Some other things that you have to avoid for a few months are holding the phone on the ear where the piercing is done, letting long hair lose on the shoulders, using headphones that go directly inside the ear canal, etc.
Apart from these aftercare instructions, an important thing one has to remember is that one should not change the jewelry at least for three months after the piercing. Once your piercing is completely healed, you can flaunt it with a variety of earrings.