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What Are the Dangers of Self-Piercing?

Learn about the dangers of self-piercing from professional piercer Owne Beane in this Howcast video.


Hello, I'm Owen Beane, I work at Chameleon Tattoo in Cambridge, Massachusetts. is the website. Chameleon Tattoo's been here more than 10 years, but ten years as such with tattooing, over the last 14 years I've been doing body piercing here in Cambridge and I'll be talking to you about piercings today. The dangers of self-piercing cannot be underestimated. There's nothing that's really set up correctly about that whole thing. So, if you're piercing someone or yourself at your house, it's going to be in the bathroom or it's going to be in the bedroom and it's just not a sterile environment. You don't have any of the right tools. You're not using, like, piercing needles most of the time. Most of the time people are using like safety pin, sewing needle. And everybody sterilizes the sewing needle by holding a lighter underneath it which does nothing to protect you. You know, you don't have the proper equipment to clean the skin or to control your hands with bacteria and such. And you can wash your hands but that's really not quite enough. The needle itself is very damaging to the tissue, because it's not actually sharp enough and it's also solid instead of hollow which makes a big difference because it just pushes tissue aside instead of what a piercing needle does which is a little different. The jewelry quality is not that great most of the time and that can be a really bad, you know, has a lot of potential for a risky situation. And if you're doing anything other than like an ear lobe, you really actually have a lot to be concerned about. But basically the major risk is infection. And you can start out with a piercing that's infected like the second that you do it and that's dangerous and then you're going to be actually in the emergency room with ‘I told you so' happening.

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