How Do Oral Piercings Affect Oral Health?

How Do Oral Piercings Affect Oral Health?

Piercings are very common these days. They are different from tattoos because piercings are external, and tattoos are internal. Both children and adults can have piercings.

What Are Oral Piercings?

An oral piercing is any piece of body jewelry that is placed directly in the mouth, usually the tongue or lip. Many people who get oral piercings are the teenage and young adult crowd. However, some adults still get them, too.

When getting an oral piercing, a dentist will often refuse to complete the procedure due to the risk of infections, nerve damage, and other complications. If you choose to get one despite this advice, you should regularly visit your dentist to check on your oral health.

Common bacteria found in your mouth can cause an infection in your piercing. This infection can lead to swelling of the gums and skin around the mouth area and even cause bone loss in the area if you have a tongue piercing. Having an infected piercing can also increase your risk of other oral health problems, such as gingivitis, tooth decay, and much more. Also, in some cases, the jewelry can chip your teeth, or the piercing can tear your gums.

While some people get their tongue pierced to temporarily change their look, most keep their tongue pierced for the rest of their lives. As you can see, having a tongue piercing can put you at risk of developing serious oral health issues, so it’s best avoided.

How Are They Done?

The two main types of oral piercings are tongue and lip rings. Tongue piercings are done through the front teeth, and the piercer will puncture a hole and insert a post through that hole. Lip rings are placed through the lower lip, between the lips. The piercer cuts a small slit in the lip and then inserts the post through the hole as well. After the jewelry is inserted, the piercer will close up the holes with sterile gauze. Your mouth will be sore for a while after the piercing, so professional cleanings will need to be done regularly to remove any excess bacteria or food particles that are left behind.

What Materials Are Used?

Metal: When metal is used, the post of the stud is thin enough to pass through the gum tissue into the jaw. The piece of jewelry can then slide freely along the post without causing damage or irritation to the gums or surrounding teeth. This is the most common type of oral piercing for males.

Acrylic: A piece of acrylic will be used and then affixed to the backside of the earlobe. The lack of posts makes this option more comfortable to wear over the long term, but the material can irritate the gum line and cause discomfort over time.

Get in touch with Karen J Harris & Associates at 2000 Locust, St. Louis, MO 63103, or call (314) 231-4893 to learn more.


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