If you have been wanting to make a fashion statement with oral piercings, whether on your lips or tongue, we advise you to take some time to evaluate the health risks involved. Your mouth is by nature home to millions of bacteria (some of them bad), and this environment is perfect for germ production. What this means is that open wounds are a safety risk, and using metal jewelry in the mouth, whether you it is a ring, stud, or a barbell, is definitely riskier than wearing pierced earrings.
If you have done your homework, and still would like to have an oral piercing done, please be aware of the following risks:
When you come in for cleanings and X-rays, it is possible that your metal jewelry can block X-rays where you are wearing them. This can interfere with getting proper dental care.
Sometimes after a piercing the tongue becomes numb from nerve damage. Usually this numbness is temporary, but it can sometimes be permanent. If this happens, your taste buds may be different, and it can also how your move your mouth. In addition, if there is damage to the blood vessels in your mouth you can lose a lot of blood.
The oral environment is a moist breeding ground for bacteria, making it susceptible to infection. If infections are not properly treated they can become life threatening. Also, if the tongue becomes swollen as a reaction to a piercing, it can block your airway.
Some people like to play with their piercings while wearing them. This habit, of using the tongue to tap the piercing, or biting it, can injure the gums and even crack or scratch sensitive teeth. Also, oral piercings can damage dental fillings.
People can experience allergic reactions from the metal used in the piercing jewelry.
Drooling can happen when the piercing increases saliva production and your mouth reacts to the metal jewelry. And while drooling isn’t dangerous, it doesn’t help your fashion statement either.
Now that you can see that oral piercings affect more than just your looks, they can also directly affect your health. So if you decide to move forward with a piercing, make sure to vet your piercing studio of choice. Make sure they are certified, that they take your health seriously as well as having excellent sanitation practices.
As always, our goal is to help you have a healthy smile, not just a fashionable one! If you have any concerns, we invite you to visit with our caring dentist, Dr. Sanjeev Sharma. You can reach our Excel Dental team in Battleground, Washington at 360-666-5700 today.