|Tongue & Cheek Piercings|
Infections: The wound created by piercing, the vast amount of bacteria in the mouth, & the introduction of additional bacteria from handling the jewelry all work to increase the risk of infections.
Transmission of Diseases: Oral piercing is a potential risk for the transmission of herpes simplex virus, hepatitis B & C.
Nerve Damage/ Prolong Bleeding: Numbness or loss of sensation at the site of the piercing or movement problems (for tongue piercings) can occur if nerves are damaged.. If the blood vessels are punctured, prolonged bleeding can occur. Tongue swelling following piercing can be severe enough to block the airway and make breathing difficult.
Endocarditis: Because of the wound created by the piercing, there is a chance the bacteria could enter the bloodstream and lead to development of endocarditis--an inflammation of the heart or its valves--in certain people with underlying ( often undiagnosed & w/o symptoms) heart problems.
Gum Disease: People with oral piercing--have a greater risk of gum disease. The jewelry can come in contact with gum tissue causing injury as well as recession of the gum tissue, which can lead to tooth loss.
|Recession of gum tissue due to placement of piercing|
|Barbell Tongue Jewelry|
Difficulties in daily oral functions: Tongue piercing can result in difficulty chewing and swallowing food & speaking clearly. This is because the jewelry stimulates an excessive amount of saliva. Temporary or permanent drooling is another consequence of increased saliva production. Taste can also be altered
Allergic reaction to metal--called allergic contact dermatitis--to the metal in the jewelry can occur is susceptible people.
|Allergic Contact Dermatitis|
* If you have decided to go through w/ the oral piercing procedure despite the risks, consider the following tips when looking for an oral piercing studio.
- Ask friends who have had their tongue, lip, or cheeks pierced--have you suffered any ill consequences--to recommend the name of the studio they visited
- Visit the studio, Does the studio have a clean appearance, especially the area the piercing are done? Ask if they have hospital -grade autoclaves for sterilization and/or use disposable instruments. Does the staff wear disposable gloves?
- Ask to see the studio's health certificates.
- Are all the needles, as well as the studs, hoops, & barbells kept in sterilized packaging?