Although tongue piercings are a form of self-expression, they come with some serious risks. Today's blog will explain how tongue piercings can be harmful to your mouth.
Your mouth is home to millions of bacteria, so it is no surprise that a tongue piercing can become infected easily. Since you cannot avoid eating or drinking while waiting for your tongue piercing to heal (a process which can take six weeks or more for some people), you are constantly exposing your piercing to food and bacteria. Signs of an infected tongue piercing include pain, swelling, discoloration, bumps, and pus. If your piercing becomes infected, your tongue can potentially swell up and block your airway, making it difficult to breathe. Plus, an infection can spread to other parts of your body and cause serious, even fatal complications, so it is important to seek emergency treatment if you have any symptoms of an infected oral piercing.
In addition to the risk of infection, tongue piercings can also damage your teeth. When you speak, chew, and swallow, your piercing may click or scrape against your teeth, which can damage your enamel over time. Repetitive contact with oral jewelry can also damage dental fillings and restorative work like crowns, bridges, or veneers. There is even a risk of cracking a tooth if you accidentally bite down hard on your tongue piercing while chewing.
A tongue piercing may scratch or irritate your sensitive gum tissue as well. If the jewelry gets caught on a piece of food or otherwise accidentally comes out, your tongue could tear. This would be painful and put you at risk for infection and even nerve damage in your tongue.
If you already have a tongue piercing, it is important to care for it properly, keep it clean, and practice good oral hygiene. This type of piercing comes with a lot of risks to your oral and overall health, so be sure to speak with us first if you are considering having your tongue pierced.
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