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How Long Will My Nipples Be Sore After Piercing Them?

how long nipple piercing pain

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Some piercings just hurt during the healing process. While the actual piercing pain for nipple piercings can range between 1-10, the healing process is generally considered one of the more painful. Some piercers even compare the pain of a healing nipple piercing to that of being kicked in the chest by a horse. Luckily though, the initial pain dies down pretty quickly and it does not hurt nearly as much for the duration of the healing period.

How Long Will Nipples Hurt After Piercing?

Even though they are not made of cartilage, nipple piercings take just as long to heal. Most piercers will tell you not to expect your nipple piercings to be fully healed for at least 12 months. As with any piercing, at any point during the healing period, your piercing will hurt and be sore if it is bumped or put pressure on. However the initial, sometimes overwhelming pain and ache from freshly pierced nipples luckily only lasts up to two weeks.

Can You Lose Feeling In Your Nipples After Piercing?

The possibility of “losing feeling” in your nipples after having them pierced is the number one reason people who want nipple piercings tend to shy away from them. While it is possible to “lose feeling” in your nipples, it’s actually more of a decrease of sensitivity. Your nipples will not become completely numb from the piercing process and if you don’t like the way your nipples feel, at any point you can remove your jewelry and let the piercing heal to regain your sensitivity.

More often, people actually have an increase in sensitivity after piercing nipples. This could be helpful if you have low sensitivity in your nipples and you want them to be included in the bedroom a little more. Just like with decreased sensitivity, if you don’t like the way your nipples feel after they are pierced, you can let them heal to go back to your original sensitivity. You can always get them re-pierced in a different location to test what the sensitivity will feel like in different places, if that is important to you.

Chapped Nipples After Piercing

Healing piercings tend to lead to dryness in the piercing location and the area surrounding it. It is important to remember that it is unsafe to put lotions or anything on a healing piercing. Although you may be able to put a small amount of Vaseline in the area around the piercing as long as you don’t put it too close to the piercing itself. If your nipples are chapped to an unbearable level, it may be caused by too much saline soaks or sprays. While salt water soaks and sprays are generally recommended to help remove crusties and aid in the healing process, too many soaks will result in your piercing drying out and cause more problems than it saves. In general, air on the side of too few soaks than too many.

Nipple Piercing Pain Scale 1-10

Out of all piercings, nipple piercings are the worst to estimate pain because it depends on so many different factors. Everyone has a different natural sensitivity in their nipples. If you feel like your nipples are generally sensitive, the piercing process will likely be more painful for you. Also, in general, men report a higher pain for nipple piercings than women do. If your nipples are not sensitive at all, you can probably estimate the pain at around a 2. You may not feel them very much at all until they become sore after the piercing process. Others may experience the pain around an 8. They may have tears brought to their eyes and their nipples will be immediately sore after piercing.

Remember that the second nipple will always hurt more than the first nipple. This is because the adrenaline protects you from the pain of the first piercing, but your adrenaline will subside and can not protect against as much of the pain for the second piercing. For this reason, some people prefer to only pierce one nipple at a time.

Should You Ice Your Nipples Before Piercing?

Because they are afraid of the pain during the piercing process, some people consider pre-icing their nipples before getting the piercing. However, pre-icing doesn’t really help with the pain. If your nipples are already pierced though, you may be able to ice them to help with the soreness. If you are really scared of the piercing pain, ask your piercer if you can take some Advil before your appointment. This will help you much more than any ice.

Should You Get Your Nipples Pierced?

Getting your nipples pierced is a truly personal decision and no one can tell you what you should do. Nipple piercings can help you to feel confident about a part of your body you may not feel confidence about. They can also add some “functionality” to your nipples by making them more sensitive. If you have inverted nipples, piercing them can even help un-invert them. If you are concerned about people in public seeing your nipple piercings – a thick bra or band-aid will hide small jewelry entirely. You can still breastfeed with pierced nipples although you will have to remove the jewelry while you are feeding as the jewelry can be a choking hazard.


Freshly pierced nipples will hurt a fair bit. Luckily this stage of pain will last only a week or two. To help with this pain, you can use salt water soaks or saline sprays – just don’t use them too often as this will cause chapped nipples! Some women find that tight fitting t-shirt bras help to keep the jewelry from moving too much during this stage of healing while others prefer to go braless. As for the piercing pain, it can range wildly throughout the 1-10 scale. Keep in mind that if the first nipple hurt too much for you, you can always return at a later time to get the second one done.