Know The Risks Of Oral Piercings

THERE ARE MANY FORMS of self-expression, art, writing, fashion, even body piercing. When it comes to oral piercings, however–such as lip, labret, cheek and tongue piercings–it’s important to know all the risks involved.

Know The Risks Before You Pierce

Piercing anywhere near the mouth is very different than simply piercing an earlobe. The oral cavity is home to an abundance of bacteria as well as an intricate system of nerves and blood vessels. Because of this, there are a number of health-related risks associated with oral piercings. Some of these include:

Bacterial infection. The mouth hosts vast amounts of bacteria and is thus easily infected. If the piercing is not done with sterile tools or if the wound is not properly taken care of, bacterial infections–and even secondary infections like hepatitis and herpes simplex virus–can develop.

Damage to teeth and gums. Contact between teeth and jewelry leads to tooth enamel erosion and oftentimes cracked or chipped teeth. Irreversible gum recession is also a common side effect of oral piercings, which can lead to tooth sensitivity and even tooth loss.

Difficulty with speech, swallowing, chewing and tasting. Oral piercings can cause an increase in saliva production, sometimes making speech difficult. Tongue piercings have been known to swell, too, potentially hindering normal function and blocking the airway. Oral piercings have also been known to alter taste.

Allergic reaction. Allergic reactions to the metal in the jewelry are possible, especially if surgical-grade stainless steel isn’t used.

Nerve damage or prolonged bleeding. This mostly occurs with tongue piercings. Because the tongue is a muscle, it contains a lot of nerves and blood vessels, including arteries. Movement problems, or numbness and loss of sensation at the site of the piercing can occur if nerves are damaged. If a blood vessel is punctured, bleeding can be severe and hard to control.

Gum disease. Oral piercings put the wearer at greater risk for periodontal, or gum disease. Gum disease can lead to tooth and bone loss, and some studies have associated gum disease with other health conditions like diabetes and stroke.

If You Choose Oral Piercings, Do It The Right Way

After understanding the risks, if you still decide to get an oral piercing make sure the procedure is performed by a trained professional who uses sterile instruments. Consult with your dentist before getting an oral piercing to learn proper aftercare and maintenance that will help you reduce your risk of infection or complication.

Your health matters to us. If you have any questions concerning this post or an existing oral piercing, call us today. We’re always happy to hear from our awesome patients!

Top image by Flickr user cerosunos used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

TLC Dental Care Announces VIP Celebration for July – We’re Celebrating YOU!

As a patient of TLC Dental Care, we want you to know how important you are to us!  So, during the month of July 2016, we will be celebrating YOU with our VIP CELEBRATION (Very Important Patient). You have done so much to support our practice that we want to say THANK YOU and give you a chance to win a great prize.

Here are the details:

VIP Appreciation Gift – Dinner at Aubrey’s Restaurant and a Movie at Regal Cinemas for 2! This gift is valued at over $100.

As a patient of TLC Dental Care you are eligible to enter for the prize by doing the following things:

First – to enter, you will need to come to the office during business hours and fill out an entry form. Note: All entries must be done in person at TLC Dental Care.

Second –  While you are there, we hope you will join in with our celebration by letting your family and friends know how much we appreciate YOU by letting us share our thanks on your social media sites!

Third – Spread the word about the VIP Celebration.  Anyone over the age of 18 is eligible to enter to win our Appreciation Gift.

Fourth – Watch us make our LIVE announcement of the TLC Dental Care VIP Celebration Winner on Friday, July 29, 2016, at 4:00 pm on our Facebook page!

Thank you for being our VIP!  You and your smile mean the world to us!

865-247-5570 Request Appointment