Potential Issues and Safety With Teen Oral Piercings

recommendations infant oral care
Recommendations for Infant Oral Care
January 22, 2019
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Potential Issues and Safety With Teen Oral Piercings

issues safety teen oral piercings

At Walker Pediatric Dentistry, one of our top priorities for young people of all ages is preventive dental care. This means taking the right kinds of advanced steps to prevent major oral issues before they become real risks, and it’s an area that spans several specific elements.

For older kids who have entered their teen years and may even be approaching adulthood, there may be a rising interest in piercings – including some in the mouth area. And while we aren’t here to tell you that this kind of thing is an absolute no-no for oral care, we do want to ensure that this kind of step is taken with an understanding about the oral risks involved. Here are a few of the concerns to keep in mind if your teen is considering an oral piercing, plus some ways to ensure everything stays clean and healthy in the area.

Possible Issues

Here are some of the issues you should keep in mind when it comes to oral piercings and the impact they may have on the mouth and surrounding areas:

  • Infection: Mouths are a common area for bacteria, and this is risky if you’re exposing an open wound like a piercing to this area.
  • Nerve issues: In certain cases of oral piercings, such as a tongue piercing, minor nerve damage will take place as part of the procedure. This may make the area feel numb for a few hours, but in some cases, the numbness can last longer and may even permanently impact the sense of taste in the mouth.
  • Disease risks: Per the National Institutes of Health, oral piercings are a possible risk for transmitting hepatitis B, C, D and G.
  • Tooth chipping or fracturing: Oral piercings tend to contain hard metal, which can come into contact with teeth in the area. These can chip, fracture and otherwise damage teeth, including causing teeth to be lost in some cases. The same can be said for dental fillings and sealants, which can be damaged badly by piercings.
  • Drooling: Tongue piercings can increase saliva production, leading to heavier drooling concerns.

Staying Clean and Safe

It’s very important that if your child is considering an oral piercing, they’re fully informed on how to keep the area sanitary and clean in the future. They should know how to clean the piercing area at least once daily, plus should keep in mind things like hand-washing and others that will prevent the spread of germs.

In addition, oral piercings should be taken out before any intense activity or sports. Dental injuries are already common in contact sports, and their risks rise significantly if metal is in or near the mouth area.

For more on the risks of oral piercings for your teen, or to learn about any of our pediatric dental services, speak to the staff at Walker Pediatric Dentistry today.