Oral piercings, including tongue and lip piercings, have become popular in recent years. However, many people who choose this form of body art are unaware of the long-term problems they can cause.
Health problems have become more apparent to dentistry professionals who have seen countless oral piercings on patients. [pullquote]You are more likely to experience a successful healing if you are dedicated to proper cleaning and after care, and if you are a non-smoker.[/pullquote]
Problems Associated With Oral Piercings
As with tattoos or other piercings, there are certain risks involved with choosing an oral piercing. These include:
• Severe infection
• Risk of contracting blood borne diseases such as hepatitis
• Damage to nerves in the pierced area
• Difficulty speaking and eating
Other problems specifically associated with oral piercings include:
• Increased risk of gum disease
• Chipped or broken teeth due to contact with the jewelry
• Choking on loose jewelry
In addition, infection in the mouth can lead to inflammation in the cardiovascular system, which can lead to long-term heart disease. This occurs when bacteria from an infection in the mouth are transmitted throughout the body.
Preventing Problems with Your Oral Piercing
If you are considering an oral piercing, consult with your dentist before making your final decision. It is also important to ensure the studio where your piercing is performed practices proper hygiene at all times, and that you work with an experienced professional. The studio should be clean and all the equipment used should be sterile.
After your piercing, you must follow all your instructions for after care to reduce the possibility of infection or other complications. Be sure to ask for explanations of any aspects of your after care you might not understand. You are more likely to experience a successful healing if you are dedicated to proper cleaning and after care, and if you are a non-smoker.
If you experience any unusual symptoms such as swelling, fever, extreme discomfort, unusual discharge or bleeding, be sure to see your doctor or dentist as soon as possible.
If you are considering an oral piercing, but want further information on how it may affect your dental health, call the Toronto office of Dr. Nicholas Kemp at 416-922-1012 to schedule a one on one consultation.