Oral piercings are incredibly popular among young people in their late teens and early 20s. Most oral piercings are around the lips and in the tongue. You can go to a piercer or a doctor to get piercings done. After the procedure you are given instructions on how to care for the wound for the first 24 to 48 hours. Instructions are given to look for signs of inflammation and infection and to see your doctor if any problems arise.
Many people who have oral piercings only keep them for a few years. Oftentimes, individuals with piercings get tired of them as their interests change as they get older. Tongue piercings, and piercings on the mouth and other places are not always welcomed in the workplace. Sometimes, however, people let their piercings heal over due to the complications of wearing jewelry in and around the mouth.
Complications associated with oral piercings
Oral piercings can become infected. The mouth is full of bacteria; holes in the tongue and in the oral mucosa can contaminate the piercing. These areas can become irritated by friction and movement of the mouth jewelry. The mouth is the main pathway for bacteria to enter the body. You might be at risk for a severe infection if microorganisms are allowed to grow in the piercings and around the jewelry.
Aside from the possibility of introducing harmful bacteria, oral piercings can cause the gums to recede. The enamel on the teeth can become damage from constant contact with the metal of lip and tongue jewelry. It is important to keep your piercings clean. Rinsing the mouth will help to remove food particles from the openings in the mouth. You should also visit your doctor regularly to verify that your piercings are not causing any problems.
Prevent complications from oral piercings
Because metal mouth and tongue jewelry can cause damage to your teeth and gums, non-metal jewelry might be an option to prevent problems in the mouth. Plastic lip rings and tongue studs are very popular because they are less likely to scratch or wear off the enamel on the teeth. Plastic lip and tongue jewelry is also less likely to cause the gums to recede from the teeth. If you want to make a fashion statement or show your individuality, you can do it safely.
A special type of plastic, called bioplastic or bioplast, is much less likely to cause problems with the oral mucosa and the teeth. It is possible for metal studs and other types of lip and tongue jewelry to fracture the teeth. Periodontal disease is another concern. Gum recession could create a pathway for microorganisms to enter below the gum line and into the jaw area. The bottom line is your dentist and medical doctor should examine you. If there is a medical or dental issue, your health professional will advise you on how you should proceed to resolve it.
Consumers Guide to Dentistry