How to not be nervous for ear piercing (Tips)

In this guide, we will discuss “How to not be nervous for ear piercing”. We will also discuss what an ear piercing is, who should not get a piercing, potential risks and a few useful tips before and after the procedure.

How to not be nervous for ear piercing

If you have decided to get an ear piercing, you may be wondering ‘How to not be nervous for ear piercing’. If it is your first piercing you may feel super nervous and excited at the same time but you may be concerned about the pain you will feel or about fainting. Try engaging in breathing exercises or deep breathing which will help you feel calmer and in control of your body.

If you are determined to get an ear piercing, consider doing it somewhere clean and safe, a place that follows the procedures, guidelines and uses sterile equipment. This will reduce your chances of an infection.

How does ear piercing work?

Depending on the part of the ear you would like your piercing, the piercer cleans the area using a medical disinfectant, mark the spot where your piercing will be and use either a sterile needle or a piercing gun. The first is more likely to be used when you are getting the tragus piercing, helix piercing or daith piercing, and the second method if you are just getting your ear lobes pierced.

The professional will insert the needle or use the piercing gun to create a whole in the same spot that they have marked previously. This procedure will take a few seconds and depending on your pain threshold, you will either feel discomfort or some pain when the needle is penetrating your skin. Additionally, it is possible to bleed a little but it is normal.

In contrast, many people ask if it is safer to use a piercing gun or a needle for the procedure and it depends on the area and the place where you are getting the piercing from. 

Can anyone get an ear piercing?

If you are pregnant, it is not recommended to get a piercing because you are at risk of getting an infection. Additionally, consult with your physician before you get your piercing if you have any of the following conditions:

  • Diabetes
  • Haemophilia (inherited bleeding disorder)
  • An autoimmune disorder
  • A heart condition
  • A condition that affects your healing or slows it down
  • Skin issues in the area where you intend to have your piercing
How to not be nervous for ear piercing (Tips)

Are there any risks?

There are always risks since your piercing is intended to break your skin so you can have the earring placed. There are risks of developing an allergic reaction if the jewellery is made of nickel or brass and you happen to be allergic to it.

Additionally, infections are always a possibility and some people may experience redness, swelling or pain in the area. Other people can experience a clear discharge after the piercing which is considered normal but if it becomes too painful and the discharge turns into a greenish or yellowish colour then we recommend to pay a visit to your doctor.

Finally, you could develop skin problems such as scars or keloids and if the professional who is doing the piercing didn’t use sterile instruments, you are at risk of contracting hepatitis B and C, tetanus and HIV. Be very mindful and careful when deciding to get a piercing and where.

How can I cope with the nerves of getting my ear pierced?

Feeling nervous for an ear piercing (or any other body piercing) is completely normal but if you are too scared and don’t know how to cope with the nerves, here are some useful recommendations. Imagine you are already there for your appointment and you are convinced that this is something you truly want. We recommend:

Talking to your piercer

If it is your first piercing make sure to ask your piercer any related questions so you can have some peace of mind and make sure this is what you want. Letting your piercer know you are nervous is nothing to be ashamed of, they have probably pierced many people before you under the same situation. Have them walk you through the process step-by-step and clear any questions or worries you may have about the procedure. 

Prepare yourself mentally

If you have made up your mind and you are going through with it then prepare yourself mentally. Know that it will hurt a little but nothing you can’t endure. Think about what motivates you to get the piercing and you could even see it as an accomplishment. If it helps you calm down, close your eyes while you are getting the piercing, this will prevent you from moving too much or freaking out as the needle comes closer.

Get distracted from the procedure so try to go in with someone else so they can talk to you and distract you from it and you can even ask them to hold your hand if you feel like it helps. Also, you could play a game on your phone or read a book. Remember that this is just a matter of seconds and you’ll be done with it. Finally, if nothing we have mentioned so far works for you, try singing your favourite song, you could sing as you see the lyrics in your head or whisper the song. 

Deep breathing

This is an extremely good tip when dealing with anxiety. Try placing one hand on top of your chest and the other one on top of your belly. Inhale slowly as you notice how the hand on top of your belly goes up as if you were inflating a balloon while the hand on top of your chest stays still. Exhale slowly and notice how the hand on top of your belly lets the air from the ‘balloon’ get out through your mouth. Repeat the exercise as many times as you need.

Another useful technique is the Wim Hof method so we recommend following the guided step by step available online or on Youtube. It is pretty simple and straightforward so you can use it not only while getting your ears pierced but every time you feel nervous or anxious so it is a great way to cope with how you feel.

Talk to other people about their experiences

Talk to people you know have had the same piercing and ask them to share their experiences with you. However, don’t be biased because some may tell you how painful it was for them but it doesn’t mean you will have exactly the same experience. For instance, if you just talk to 2 or 3 people, chances are two of them will tell you their experience was painful and the third person will say that it wasn’t that terrible. You are more likely to believe that you will experience pain than not so you will go to the procedure already predisposed.

Additionally, avoid watching videos about the procedure because just as you may find some reassuring ones, you may find others that may even make you feel more scared about it.

Why is this blog about How to not be nervous for ear piercing important?

As we have discussed when talking about ‘How to not be nervous for ear piercing’, being nervous is normal since you may think it could be a very painful experience and you could see some blood in the process which increases your anxiety levels. However, remember to go in with a positive mindset, remembering why you want to get the piercing in the first place. Also, if you need, you can bring someone along to give you some emotional support or to hold your hand. 

Talk to your piercer and be honest about your feelings, they may have very useful tips besides, they have seen many people just in your same situation. Finally, make sure to follow the instructions on how to take care of your piercing so you minimize the chance of an infection. However, if it becomes swollen, red and there is a green or yellow discharge that won’t go away after a few days we recommend visiting your doctor.

Please feel free to leave any comments or thoughts about the content of this article!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about How to not be nervous for ear piercing

How can I calm my nerves before piercing?

If you want to calm your nerves before getting a piercing, try to work on your breathing. Also, bring someone along if it makes you feel less nervous. Additionally, make sure you get enough sleep the night before and maybe you could take a painkiller before heading to the piercing studio. 

What should you not do when you pierce your ear?

What you should not do when you pierce your ear is moving while they are piercing your ear. This will translate in feeling more discomfort and pain, besides being dangerous. Additionally, after getting your ear pierced, it may become very tempting to touch it but avoid it at all costs since it can easily get infected.

How do you soothe an ear piercing?

If you need to soothe an ear-piercing, here are some recommendations:

– Always wash your hands with soap before you touch or manipulate your piercing.

– Don’t remove your piercing until it is completely healed. Clean around it with saltwater rinse three times a day.

– Avoid using alcohol, hydrogen peroxide or antibiotic ointments.

Why do people faint during piercings?

If you feel like you are about to faint during piercings it is because your body reacts to getting a piercing as if it was a distressing situation which causes your blood pressure to drop rapidly. This is also known as Vasovagal response. Just let your piercer know that you tend to pass out or feel like fainting when you are getting a body piercing so they can take the proper precautions.

What should you not do before a piercing?

Try to avoid not eating or fasting before you get a body piercing. It is recommended to eat at least a small or light meal before getting pierced (6 hours minimum). Not eating will lower your blood sugar levels and thins your blood so you will bleed more than you usually would and you are at risk of fainting.

References 

Webmd.com: “What You Should Know About Ear Piercing”

Blue, S. (2020, May.) How to Get an Ear Piercing Without Freaking Out. Retrieved from wikihow.com.

How to not be nervous for ear piercing (Tips)

Juanita Agboola

Juanita Agboola is the editor in chief of HFNE and an expert in mental health online. She has been writing about online behavior, mental health and psychology issues since 2012. All Guides are reviewed by our editorial team which constitutes various clinical psychologists, PhD and PsyD colleagues.