How Bad Does a Septum Piercing Hurt?

Preparing Yourself for a Septum Piercing

Before getting a septum piercing, it’s important to prepare yourself mentally and physically. Here are a few things to consider:

Do Your Research

Make sure you research the piercing process, including the tools and techniques used by the piercer. This will help you understand what to expect during the procedure and can alleviate any anxiety you may have.

Choose a Reputable Piercer

It’s essential to choose a professional and experienced piercer who uses sterilized equipment to minimize the risk of infection. Read reviews, ask for recommendations, and check the piercer’s portfolio before making a decision.

Get Plenty of Rest and Eat Beforehand

Make sure you’re well-rested and have eaten a good meal before your appointment. Low blood sugar can make you feel lightheaded or nauseous during the piercing, and fatigue can affect your ability to handle pain.

Avoid Alcohol and Blood-Thinning Medications

Avoid drinking alcohol or taking blood-thinning medications before your piercing. These substances can thin the blood and increase bleeding during the procedure, making it more difficult to control.

Dress Appropriately

Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing that won’t irritate the piercing site. Avoid tight-fitting shirts that may rub against your nose or jewelry, and avoid wearing makeup or perfume that could irritate the area.

Factors That Affect the Pain Level of a Septum Piercing

The pain level of a septum piercing can vary depending on several factors. Here are some factors that can affect how much pain you’ll experience during the piercing process:

Pain Tolerance

Everyone has a different pain tolerance, so what may be unbearable for one person may be completely tolerable for another. If you have a low pain tolerance, you may want to consider taking pain medication beforehand or opting for a numbing agent during the piercing.

Piercer’s Technique

The piercer’s technique can also affect how much pain you’ll experience during the piercing. An experienced and skilled piercer will use a quick and precise technique that minimizes discomfort, whereas an inexperienced piercer may take longer or be less precise, causing more pain.

Jewelry Size and Style

The size and style of the jewelry can also affect the pain level. Larger or thicker jewelry may cause more discomfort during insertion, whereas smaller and thinner jewelry may be less noticeable.

Placement of the Piercing

The placement of the piercing can also affect the pain level. If the piercing is done too high or too low in the septum, it can cause more pain and discomfort during the healing process.

Personal Health and Well-being

Your overall health and well-being can also affect the pain level. If you’re feeling sick, tired, or stressed, you may be more sensitive to pain. On the other hand, if you’re feeling healthy and relaxed, you may be more able to handle the pain.

Techniques to Minimize Pain during a Septum Piercing

If you’re worried about the pain of getting a septum piercing, there are a few techniques you can try to minimize discomfort. Here are some tips:

Take Pain Medication

Taking pain medication, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, before the piercing can help minimize discomfort. Be sure to follow the recommended dosage and timing on the label and check with your doctor if you have any concerns.

Use a Numbing Agent

A numbing agent, such as lidocaine or benzocaine, can be applied to the area before the piercing to reduce pain. This can be done by your piercer or by a doctor.

Deep Breathing

Taking slow, deep breaths during the piercing can help relax your body and reduce pain. Focus on breathing in through your nose and out through your mouth.


Listening to music or engaging in conversation with your piercer can help distract you from the pain and make the process feel less intimidating.

Pressure Points

Some people find that applying pressure to certain points on the body can help alleviate pain. For example, applying pressure to the area between your thumb and index finger can help reduce pain during the piercing.

Aftercare Tips to Help Manage Pain and Speed Up Healing

After getting a septum piercing, it’s important to take proper care of the area to minimize pain and speed up healing. Here are some tips for aftercare:

Clean the Piercing Site

Clean the piercing site with a saline solution or sea salt soak twice a day to prevent infection and reduce pain. Avoid using alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or other harsh chemicals, as these can irritate the area.

Avoid Touching or Rotating the Jewelry

Avoid touching or rotating the jewelry, as this can cause irritation and delay healing. Only touch the jewelry when cleaning it, and avoid twisting or turning it.

Avoid Sleeping on the Piercing

Avoid sleeping on the piercing, as this can cause discomfort and delay healing. Instead, try sleeping on your back or propping yourself up with pillows.

Avoid Makeup, Perfume, and Other Irritants

Avoid wearing makeup, perfume, or other irritants near the piercing site, as these can cause irritation and pain.

Eat a Healthy Diet and Stay Hydrated

Eating a healthy diet and staying hydrated can help speed up healing and reduce pain. Be sure to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains, and drink plenty of water.

Signs of Infection or Complications and When to Seek Medical Attention

While septum piercings are generally safe, there is a risk of infection or other complications. It’s important to be aware of the signs of infection or complications and to seek medical attention if necessary. Here are some signs to watch out for:

Pain, Redness, or Swelling

Some pain, redness, and swelling are normal after getting a septum piercing, but if these symptoms persist or worsen over time, it could be a sign of infection.

Discharge or Pus

If you notice any discharge or pus coming from the piercing site, it could be a sign of infection.

Fever or Chills

A fever or chills could be a sign of an infection or other complication, especially if they occur along with other symptoms.


Some bleeding is normal after a piercing, but if the bleeding doesn’t stop or is excessive, it could be a sign of a complication.

Difficulty Breathing or Swallowing

In rare cases, a septum piercing can cause difficulty breathing or swallowing. If you experience these symptoms, seek medical attention immediately.

If you experience any of these symptoms, or if you have any other concerns about your septum piercing, contact your piercer or a healthcare professional for advice.

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