The sterility of the initial (first) piece of body jewelry inserted into freshly pierced skin is crucial. This is because the jewelry comes into contact with ruptured skin that is most susceptible to infection. Make sure your body piercer uses body jewelry that is pre-sterilized properly and packaged in sterile color-changing pouches (see photo). Failure to use sterile body jewelry can lead to serious infections and if left untreated, can lead to serious injury or even death. Even if there is no complications from infections, it can lengthen healing time considerably.
If you are not sure your piercer is using sterile body jewelry, feel free to inquire if he/she does and ask to see the sterile pouch and color-changing area of the pouch that indicates it has been properly sterilized. Legitimate body piercers will not have a problem allowing you to see their sterilized items. If the piercer balks or refuses, leave immediately. It is your right as a customer to be pierced by a sober, certified piercer who uses sterile tools, needles and body jewelry. It is also the law.