Body piercing as a way of adornment has been around since time immemorial. Diverse civilizations have had a special place for it. In many ancient societies, it was used to embody socio-politic power and physical valor. Only the pharaohs in ancient Egypt could pierce their belly buttons as a mark of their God-like status. The trend continues till date, although today you find almost everybody capable of carrying it off, sporting a body piercing, be they are well-known movie stars or not. Of all the body piercings, eyebrow piercing is perhaps the most modern of its kind. It originated from the ‘if it protrudes, pierce it’ philosophy of the 1990s, and now it has entered mainstream fashion. The vogue shows no signs of waning notwithstanding the risks attached to it. It owes its popularity to the punk style that made eyebrow piercing a cult of sorts and made people — mostly young boys and girls — jump onto the bandwagon, sometimes quite mindlessly, at that.
The eyebrow is usually pierced vertically at an angle wherein the jewelry goes through the top of the eyebrow and comes out of the bottom of the eyebrow. Some of the commonly used eyebrow piercing jewelry is rings and barbells with a thickness of 1 to 1.2 mm. Like all other piercings, eyebrow piercing too requires a certain amount of deliberation. It has always remained contentious on account of its proximity to the eyes and brain. Permanent scarring of the pierced area is a very common phenomenon. Visiting a certified practitioner reduces the possibility of putting yourself on the line. However, it doesn’t take much for an unqualified practitioner to cause permanent damage. You could even be paralyzed for the rest of your life if your eyebrow piercing goes wrong. So, it is better to calculate the dangers of piercing before you jeopardize your life. To know more, read this article on the risks of eyebrow piercing.
Risks from Eyebrow piercing
- You can suffer bacterial infections if the equipment used is not thoroughly sterilized. The piercing area is an entry point for the bacteria. Painful inflammation, fever and increased discharge are some of the symptoms of bacterial infection.
- Not all the metals typically used for eyebrow piercings suit a person. You may realize that you are allergic to certain metals only during or after piercing. You may also need to be hospitalized if the inflammation, coupled with breathing problems, lasts for a long time.
- You may find the piercing migrating, i.e., the jewelry can move away from its actual position, towards the surface of the skin. Sometimes it can completely cut through the skin. The angle at which the eyebrow is pierced also affects the migration.
- If you smoke, you have done your body no credit by getting your eyebrow pierced. Smoking is known to wreck the immune system which can impede your healing and blood circulation in the skin.
- You can be at a grave risk of permanent nerve damage if the piercing spot is between the area directly above the eye and the start of the brow. There are three major nerves present here.
- Swimming in water that is not chlorine or ozone treated can invite bacterial and parasitic infections in the pierced area.
- A piercing that that has not completely healed can facilitate penetration of viruses like Hepatitis A, B, C and HIV. An infected person can carry these viruses in his/her blood, saliva, semen, sweat and vaginal secretions. Coming in contact with such a person can be hazardous.
- The eyebrow has a rich supply of blood connecting to the eye. You can potentially lose your sight if the infection spreads to the eye. Your brain too has a risk of getting infected.