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Thinking About Getting a Tongue Piercing?

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A sizable percentage of people decide to get a tongue piercing, particularly those who are college-aged. While the fad might be popular, it also comes with some dangers. Read on to find out whether the risks of a tongue piercing outweigh the benefits so you can make an informed decision.

Bacterial Infections

The mouth is filled with bacteria, and when you get your tongue pierced, some of that bacteria goes into the wound that’s created. The result could be a nasty bacterial infection. Most of the time, these infections can be treated with antibiotics, but occasionally they have potentially fatal repercussions. If you have a suppressed immune system, diabetes, or a heart problem, the infection could spread throughout the body. Another issue is that if the infection creates swelling, it could cut off airflow to your lungs.

Tooth Injuries

The metal bar that you will wear in your tongue piercing takes some practice to get used to. While you’re learning how to speak, eat, and swallow with your piercing in place, it’s easy to damage one of your teeth. Even once you are used to it, damage is possible; consider how often you accidentally bite down on your tongue. If you bite down on the jewelry, it could cause you to break or chip a tooth or dislodge a filling.

Minimizing the Risk

If you still want to get a tongue piercing, talk to your doctor or dentist first about ways to minimize the risk of infection and tooth damage. Also, follow your aftercare instructions to the letter; this might include removing certain foods from your diet and swishing with an antibacterial mouthwash. Also, at the first sign of infection, remove the barbell and seek care from a dentist.

Please call our office to talk about the risks of getting a tongue piercing. If you have one and it’s giving you trouble, call to schedule an appointment.

Call 919.388.3111 to make an appointment or

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