Let’s talk about; Keloids v. Healing bumps

Let’s chat,

Keloids v. Healing bumps.

So what is a keloid? Well, by definition a keloid is: (Keloid): A raised scar after an injury has healed.

A keloid is caused by an excess protein (collagen) in the skin during healing.

“Keloids often are lumpy or ridged. The scar rises after an injury or condition has healed, such as a surgical incision or acne. Keloids aren’t harmful and don’t need treatment. If a person finds them unattractive, a doctor can sometimes minimize the scars.”

Keloids do not weep, or have discharge, as it is usually just scar tissue causing the raised skin, not fluid buildup. This is another way to determine if you have a keloid or not.

Keloids are also more likely to happen on people who have a familial history of them. Have you ever had a surgery? Look at the wound, is it raised and thick? Or is it flat or mostly flush against the skin?

Deeper cuts that go into the fatty layer of our skin are more likely to keloid; ie; deep tissue cuts, burns, surgery incisions etc.

Healing bumps

Most often when I see a client for a suspected keloid, they are mistaken, and what we’re dealing with is actually; A.) Irritation, inflammation, or B.) Healing bumps

Healing bumps normally go away, Keloids do not. Healing bumps normally stay within the incision or puncture area, keloids can extend beyond the incision area.

Healing bumps can happen due to irritation such as; Getting our jewelry snagged on something, hitting/smacking the area, external irritants such as shampoos, sprays or dust getting caught in the wound, over cleaning / under cleaning. All of these can lead to irritation.

Prolonged irritation can make your new piercing take longer to heal. Be mindful when washing your hair, applying makeup, using lotions and sprays, and hair or clothing getting caught onto the pierced area.

Treatment for healing bumps

One way to treat a healing bump is first identify what could have caused it. If the healing bump is caused by irritation, what kind of irritation is it? And how can we avoid this kind of irritation.

For example, maybe the healing bump was caused by sleeping on the area, what can we do to avoid sleeping on the area. An easily fix is a travel pillow for ear piercings, or sleeping on the opposite side.

Maybe you got shampoo or make up stuck inside the piercing wound, this is a cause of irritation. The solution would be to rinse out the area thoroughly to make sure there are no external irritants that can cause inflammation. Then be mindful next time.

Once we eliminate or lower the possibility of irritation, we should focus on healing the skin. I like to think of this in two steps, 1. Primary disinfectant, 2. Healing solution.

First, we should A.) Keep the area clean, this means once daily cleanings to the piercing (baby soap, or mild unscented soap and water )

Then we should use a sterile healing solution such as a saline spray (Neil med piercing aftercare).

Remember, #2 healing solution does not disinfect. This is why we use soap and water first always, then healing solution. Not the other way around.

I have seen healing bumps go away in less than a month with proper treatment.

Please note, no where in this essay did I say, use tea Tree oil, aspirin paste, peroxide, alcohol or some strange mixture we found online, for treatment.

The goal is always to heal the skin and close the wound. A puncture wound to be exact, which is what a piercing is. The items mentioned above may have good outcomes for some but this doesn’t exactly treat the issue of what is causing the healing bump. Which may vary on clients.

So folx, if you suspect you have a healing bump or a keloid, Call your piercer or body mod person so they can give you the best course of action.

This is not medical advice as I am not a doctor, this essay is only what I’ve researched and experienced with clients practicing body modifications, and my recommended course of action.

Please note, recommended course of action can vary between clients. There are times when a healing bump will not get better after months of treatment. When this happens, removal is highly recommended. With jewelry removal you usually see the area completely heal and any bumps or raised skin go away.

If you suspect you have an infection, seek medical help right away. Most piercing or tattoo infections can be solved with proper aftercare and antibiotics. And although infection is rare, it does happen and should be taken seriously. See sources below for more information regarding keloids and healing bumps.

…..

Sources:

https://www.health.harvard.edu/a_to_z/keloids-a-to-z

https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/keloid-scars/

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/piercing-bump-vs-keloid#keloids

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