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Stretching is an ancient tradition that more and more body modification fans are adopting today. Most common is the earlobe stretching, but most piercings can be stretched over time -- tongues, navels and septums. Tapers are generally used to assist in the stretching process. Tapers are needle-like tools that can be moved through your piercing at varying times to widen the hole.
A general rule with stretching is not to rush the process. You may be anxious to try out that great collection of tribal wooden body jewelry, but if you rush, you'll only end up injuring yourself. Stretch at about three times the rate as your piercing originally took to heal. For example, if your earlobe took two months to heal, wait six months to begin your stretching process with body jewelery. See your piercing professional for a steady schedule you can follow.