The Hidden Dangers of Oral Piercings: What Everybody Should Know

April 30, 2024

Today, one thing is clear. Oral piercings have skyrocketed in popularity as a form of self-expression. However, beyond their aesthetic appeal, these body embellishments pose significant risks to your oral health and overall well-being.

The Ugly Side of Tongue Piercings

Tongue piercings involve inserting jewelry through the tongue's muscular tissue, creating a piercing that will come into direct contact with teeth and gums. Among the primary risks associated with tongue piercings are local and systemic infections. According to reports, infections more commonly occur with tongue piercings than other types of body piercings. Why? Besides the possible lack of sterilization and infection control, when a tongue piercing gets placed, the mouth is full of bacteria that can contribute to an infection.

It's also worth noting that metal tongue jewelry can chip or fracture teeth, particularly if individuals habitually bite down on the piercing. Moreover, a tongue piercing can contribute to gum recession, as the jewelry can irritate and injure delicate gum tissue over time.

Lip Piercings: A Double-Edged Sword

Lip piercings, whether located on the upper or lower lip, also pose significant risks to oral health. Like tongue piercings, lip jewelry can cause dental trauma when it comes into contact with the teeth during speech, eating, or other oral activities. As with tongue piercing, lip jewelry can create an ideal environment for bacteria to thrive, increasing the risk of inflammation and infection.

Other Oral Piercing Risks

Beyond dental concerns, oral piercings can lead to a range of complications affecting overall well-being. Tongue piercings, in particular, may interfere with speech articulation, causing lisps or difficulty pronouncing certain sounds. Moreover, the presence of oral piercings increases the risk of soft tissue injuries, such as lacerations or puncture wounds, which can become infected if not properly cared for. In severe cases, oral piercings have been associated with serious complications, including nerve damage, excessive bleeding, and allergic reactions to metal jewelry.

Protecting Your Mouth and Body

At the office of Friendly Smiles of Solomons, we provide care to protect and ensure optimal oral health and overall wellness. While oral piercings may represent a popular form of self-expression, they come with significant risks that should not be overlooked. If you currently have an oral piercing and intend to keep it, remember to prioritize regular dental check-ups and diligent oral hygiene practices. It's the best way to mitigate potential risks and preserve your smile for years to come.