Even though you might not think so, earrings aren’t the only kind of body jewelry available. In today’s lesson, we will take a look at a very stylish and unique kind of body piercing. You should now learn about all the different types of tongue piercings, their aftercare, the healing process of a tongue piercing, and everything you should know about them. How will you choose your favorite tongue piercing from such a large variety?
The time it takes for oral piercings to heal will vary from person to person, so before we get into all of this tongue piercing information, it’s important to note that tongue piercing pain tolerance varies and that different types of oral piercings require different healing times. Be sure to talk to a piercing professional prior to deciding on which piercing will be right for you.
History of Tongue Piercing
A tongue piercing is not restricted to either men or women – it was designed for both men and women alike. Tongue piercings are often referred to as tongue rings, but this is a false representation since rings are very rarely worn in tongue piercings.
Both Aztec and Maya cultures had a tradition of ritual tongue piercing, which depicted priests piercing their tongues and drawing blood from them or going through rough cords designed to cause pain. Despite the practice of many permanent body modifications in Aztec culture, there are no records of long-term or permanent tongue piercing, though it was done to honor the gods.
Piercing the tongue has been a religious and performance practice for thousands of years. The Aztecs were the most famous Mesoamericans who performed this as well as other perforations as part of offering their deities. During trance states, Oriental Spirit Mediums of the Far East did tongue piercing as an offering and proof of their trance state.
Carnies in Western cultures borrowed many of their sideshow tricks from fakirs at the turn of the century, introducing tongue piercing to American and European audiences for the first time.
As body piercing resurgence continues in contemporary society, permanent or long-term tongue piercings are becoming popular. It is believed that this piercing came into being in the 1980s due to the widespread availability of surgical steel barbell-style jewelry. Like many piercing innovations, it was invented by Gauntlet, the first professional body piercing studio in the United States. Located in Los Angeles, California, Gauntlet currently resides in New York City.
It was reported by Tattoo Samy in PFIQ (the magazine that pioneered body piercings) in issues #18 (1983) and #19 as PFIQ’s first documented tongue piercing.
It was Elayne Angel, the first person to be awarded the Master Piercer award by Jim Ward, the founder of Gauntlet and a pioneer in body piercing, who popularized this type of piercing.
Types of Tongue Piercings
Telling the piercer that you want a tongue piercing, while seated in front of them, will probably result in a blank stare. It is the same as telling your barber that you want a haircut when you approach a piercer for a tongue piercing. A professional won’t be able to understand your requirements unless you explain them clearly.
It is imperative that you make sure your piercer knows exactly what type of piercing you want and what type of jewelry you would like to go with it. The following are the most common types of tongue piercings that you are likely to see on someone, so you can make a more informed decision.
Midline Tongue Piercing
To begin, let’s consider the simplest and most common type of tongue piercing, the midline piercing. Midline piercings are located in the middle of the tongue as their name implies. This is because it is located in the middle, making it one of the easiest piercings. The piercer can also give it easily because it is the easiest piercing to do.
Although this piercing is quite beautiful, it can be a bit uncomfortable, especially when eating. Therefore, if you tend to eat primarily with your right side, it would be wise to get the piercing on your left side to prevent any irritation.
Horizontal or Vertical Tongue Piercing
As we move ahead, we will take a look at the second most common type of piercing: vertical or horizontal tongue piercing. A common kind of tongue piercing that many people get is horizontal and vertical tongue piercing. In addition to piercing the left and right sides of the tongue, it is also possible to pierce the middle of the tongue vertically.
Both vertically and horizontally, there is no limit to the number of piercings a person can get. As a matter of fact, not every piercer will do this type of piercing because there are several risks associated with the procedure. A tongue piercing could hit those nerves since there are many nerves running through the tongue.
Additionally, you run the risk of damaging various blood vessels in your tongue with this piercing. Therefore, it is important to find a qualified professional for the job, because you want to avoid damaging both nerves and blood vessels.
Snake Eyes Piercing
Although this tongue piercing is in fact the strangest of all tongue piercings, it remains a captivating piercing to look at. There is nothing more fancy or cool than the name snake eyes piercing, which is also an excellent description of what this piercing looks like. When you show the other person this piercing, they do think it looks like a snake. Despite the fact that the piercing appears to be two separate pieces of jewelry, it actually is one large piece.
A snake-eye piercing takes place at the tip of your tongue, and it looks delightful.
Side Tongue Piercing
There are some similarities between the side tongue piercing and the midline piercing, but the difference is in the placement of the jewelry. A midline tongue piercing is located exactly what its name implies, right in the middle of the tongue, but side tongue piercing is only on one side of the tongue (either to the left or to the right).
Of course, you can choose whether you want the piercing to go on your left or right side. However, you should make your choice carefully, as it can be unpleasant to eat with the piercing. Professionals recommend piercings be placed on the side where you chew the least, so you will not get irritated.
Frenulum Linguae Piercing
Last but not least, let me talk about the piercing you will be the least likely to encounter because it is usually beneath the tongue. The frenulum is a small strip under the tongue, and it’s one of the toughest places to get a piercing, not only because it’s right under the tongue, but also because it’s extremely sensitive.
There are certain conditions that cannot be met when getting this piercing, including people with thin and weak frenulums, which could cause it to fall off. If you choose this type of piercing, make sure to speak with your doctor before committing.
Lip Frenulum Piercing (Frowny Piercing)
When you get a frowny piercing, it is through the thin skin that connects your lower lip and mouth. Piercing needles are usually hollow 16 or 18 gauge and used for this procedure. The healing period normally lasts between 4 and 8 weeks. The safest jewelry to wear during this time is curved barbells.
Lip Frenulum Piercing (Smiley Piercing)
When you experience a Smiley Piercing, you are pierced through the thin layer of skin that separates your upper lip and mouth. Hollow 16 or 18 gauge piercing needles are typically used for this procedure. The healing period usually lasts four to eight weeks. It is recommended that you wear a Horseshoe ring during this time.
We can now cover some of the different styles of piercings that you can try out in order to truly impress your friends once you know the different types of piercings.
This procedure involves piercing the tongue through the uvula horizontally. Piercings of this type are typically performed with a hollow needle measuring 14 or 16 gauge. After the procedure, 4 to 8 weeks are required for healing. CBR (Captive Bearings) are recommended for this procedure.
It consists of two holes piercing the sides of the tongue between the middle and tip of the tongue, which is typically located between the middle of the tongue and the tip. The procedure is sometimes called piercing the side of the tongue. In order to perform this piercing, a hollow 16 gauge piercing needle is usually used. After the piercing has healed, it may take up to eight weeks to close. It is recommended to wear standard barbells or curved barbells during this time.
How Much Does It Hurt?
The answer to this question is unfortunately the hardest. Every person’s experience of pain is subjective, so it’s impossible for someone to say precisely how much something hurts. As you know, the piercing will hurt, but how much and to what extent will depend on your sensitivity and how much it bothers you.
A piercing is often compared to biting your teeth in terms of the pain experienced during the procedure. Although this is an inaccurate statement, biting your tongue is much more painful. A needle covers a very small area of the tongue when you accidentally bite it; in contrast, your teeth cover much more of the tongue surface when you accidentally bite it.
In answer to your question, yes tongue piercings can be really painful, and it is unlikely that you can avoid them.
Tongue Piercing Jewelry
During the piercing, straight barbells are used to adorn the tongues. It is especially important to consider the size and comfort of jewelry when moving the tongue frequently. It is sometimes uncomfortable and irritating to use barbells that are too thin. Large jewelry can often be inserted into tongue piercings without the need to stretch the hole. Although the initial piercing is often performed at 14 g (1.6 mm), it is possible to pierce immediately at 12 g (2.0 mm) or even 10 g (2.4 mm) if needed to avoid a few stretching steps. In tongue piercings, straight barbells are often worn with beads made of either plastic or metal.
People sometimes decide to add extensions to their piercing to prevent potential migration and to create a more secure ‘snug’ fit by adjusting the size to 12g (2mm), 10g (2.4mm), 8g (3.2mm), and 6g (4mm). Further stretching can extend to diameters over 10 mm. The beads that hang from the bottom of the barbell can be made from many different materials. The so-called “No-See-Um Beads” are flat beads that match the color of the tongue. They are most often worn by people working at customer service desks to conceal this piercing. It is possible to hide a piercing by using appropriate colored and styled jewelry and being careful while speaking/laughing.
Different Styles of Tongue Piercings
The Smiley Face
Do you happen to be a big fan of comics by Alan Moore? This smiley face piercing should bring back some awesome memories. The Watchmen comic series is considered to be one of the earliest and most influential comic book series of all time because it so successfully combined humor, wit, and horror within a 12-issue span. This will make for a great icebreaker, especially since the new HBO series will be released very soon.
Although some of you may argue that the original symbol was stained with blood, friends who know you well will understand why you got it. And even if you’re not a huge fan of comics, a smiley midline tattoo can act as a great way to make you feel unstoppable and look good.
The Bold Barbell Piercing
People are switching from studs to barbells as the new popular piercing now; it’s out with the studs and in with the barbells. Barbells like these are extremely impressive and command attention from everyone’s perspective. There is something incredibly beautiful about this pink barbell midline piercing.
While barbell piercings could sometimes be considered fierce, pink colors can provide a calm and soft feeling, giving the piercing a unique and awesome combination of ferocity and softness. While the pink color of the tip is so bright that it effectively contrasts with the immensely dark color of the barbell, it does not overpower it.
Very Bold Choices (Ring and Barbell)
When you want to go the extra mile, why not get both a barbell and a ring on your tongue pierced? If you’re looking for something more, then why not go all the way to a double piercing. Now, this is certainly an edgy look that is not for everyone, but nevertheless, it is an incredibly impressive style.
In addition to being symmetrical, the barbell and ring also take on the appearance of a midline piercing. This further adds to the overall appeal of both pieces. With the new feature, you can change the color of the rings and barbells as well as their styles to alter the overall style. Additionally, the change in style and color can make the style a lot less edgy if that is what you are concerned about. Remember, though, to get a piercing is a big commitment, so don’t rush into it. Instead, have a talk with yourself.
Double Midline Studs
As with these incredible midline studs, almost everything becomes better when there are several of them. If you double your studs, that means you’ll double your commitment.
Even though they look amazing on their own, they become even more spectacular when you combine them with different styles of barbells and studs. In spite of the fact that these red studs look wonderful on their own, anything can be made better. It’s time for you to go crazy with it, and make yourself more memorable.
However, this is one of the most stylish styles you can get and it’s ideal for casual occasions and days. Alternatively, if you are going for a more discreet look, you can choose to replace the double ball studs with flatter studs.
Crystal Ball Stud
It is almost necessary that every piece of jewelry should have a bedazzled counterpart, it is an essential part of every piece of jewelry. If you’re looking for something a little shinier, then we might have what you’re looking for.
In situations where you intend to be the center of attention, the crystal ball stud is the perfect accessory. As well as being extremely shiny (obviously), the stud can be worn on the tip of your tongue, making it even more visually appealing. In addition to the existing stud, you can also add another one to the mix just for a little extra satisfaction.
In terms of its placement, the crystal ball stud is incredibly dynamic, as you can place it just about anywhere, and it will look great.
Gold Frenulum Piercing
With a gold barbell under your tongue, you will be the center of attention like never before. Although it won’t be seen by everyone, it will definitely make a lasting impression on those who do catch a glimpse of it.
If you have other piercings on your tongue, this piercing will look fantastic when combined with them. Be sure to combine and match to achieve the perfect look. By contrast, the barbell has the advantage that it can be a bit of a nuisance under the best of conditions, whereas a frenulum ring is unlikely to be as convenient.
Although you may think that piercing your frenulum is not for you, you may think differently after viewing this image.
Generally speaking, you have heard of snake eyes piercings, but you probably haven’t heard of snake bites piercings. Essentially, snakebites are just another way to say horizontal piercings close to each other, but they’re much cooler and edgier.
With flat studs on the surface of the tongue, snakebites piercings often look significantly better than they used to. It does not necessarily matter how good ball tops look, if you plan to wear them for an extended period of time they can be a little uncomfortable.
- Square Piercings
Are you tired of the incredibly conventional and generic barbells that come with balls at either end? Well, where do you go from here? Maybe these square piercings are the thing for you.
There are many types of square piercings, like barbells, and they can be used for a wide range of purposes since any piercing can be used to make them. In other words, you can either get a midline piercing or a side piercing on your tongue. Both will look great.
Now, while the square bar does come in black, if that is a little too gothic for you, you can work with your professional to find a color that works for you.
- Bold Rings
Rings that are bold are another frenulum piercing that’s not for those who are easily scared. People are not always willing to get a frenulum piercing, however, those who do add a certain level of ferocity to their personalities.
Rings can be any color you want, so you can choose whichever kind of ring you would like to wear. And if you are feeling particularly flashy, you can buy a gold ring to go with your frenulum piercing. Furthermore, you can also get a much larger ring for your frenulum, which will further prove your fierceness.
Classic Snake Eyes
For those who aren’t seeking anything too flashy or exposing, classic snake eyes piercings are always an option. The fact that they are situated on the tip of your tongue makes it hard to notice them, as well as that they are quite cool-looking.
Depending on the jewelry you choose, you can either use larger piercings, or you can choose something smaller and less recognizable. There are also a number of different necklaces available.
It doesn’t suddenly transform you into a fierce person who others won’t mess with just because you have a tongue piercing. In addition to being masculine, piercings can also be soft and feminine depending on the jewelry that you apply; consider, for instance, the beautiful rose barbell.
The rose barbell has an elegant and elegant appearance that makes your piercing appear incredibly beautiful instead of bold. A silver rose does not carry any other colors than silver, further contributing to its elegance.
How to Change Out a Tongue Piercing
The use of a shorter barbell for tongue piercings is highly recommended once the healing process is complete. In case you don’t, you may chip your teeth, bite your jewelry, suffer from gum recession behind the teeth, and even swallow your jewelry.
A tongue piercing can be changed out completely, and in most cases, is something you can do at home yourself. Simply hold out your tongue and grasp the beads on both sides of the barbell and twist until one is removed. You can then insert your new piece of jewelry through the hole created by pulling out the bar. All that remains is to tighten the new jewelry’s beads until they are secure.
Josephine is, however, of the opinion that seeing your piercer before changing jewelry is a good idea, so you’re doing as little harm to the healing wound as possible and to avoid infecting the wound with bacteria from incompetence or an accident.
It is important to be cautious when in the mouth due to the presence of virulent bacteria.
What Type of Jewelry Is Used for a Tongue Piercing?
The tongue is typically pierced using a 14 gauge (14G) titanium, or gold barbell that measures 7/8-inch. The barbell length can be shortened once the tongue piercing is healed; that is the initial tongue piercing size.
When one gets a tongue piercing or other oral piercing, there is a risk of damaging the teeth and/or existing dental work, however, these risks can be significantly reduced with the appropriate tongue piercing jewelry. Ensure that your body jewelry is appropriate in size, made from the right materials, and is well-made by consulting with your piercer. It is imperative that you are also informed so that you can make the right choice with your piercer. It’s not a good idea to use a lip ring as a tongue ring, as some styles of the piercing jewelry are suitable for certain types of piercings.
In a new piercing, longer barbells should be used to allow for swelling and should be left in until the piercing heals. After the healing process is complete, however, shorter barbells should be used to avoid dental work or structural damage. Besides wearing a small ball on the underside of your tongue, it may be beneficial to wear a larger ball as well.
You should always ensure that the body jewelry is made from high-quality materials such as titanium or 14-karat gold. In addition, it should be noted that damages like these are often a result of persistent “playing” with the piercing, so use caution.
In most cases, jewelry is used in a ball-shaped piercing, while cones and cylindrical piercings are much less common.
Barbell: A barbell is essentially a metal bar with a small bead attached to both ends. Two beads are typically attached; one is removable, and the other is not. Putting a barbell in a tongue piercing is accomplished by pushing it through behind the needle. It is imperative that tongue piercings be done with straight bars. Any tongue piercing that requires a curved barbell should simply not be done.
What Jewelry Material Is Used for a Tongue Piercing?
“We use surgical grade … stainless steel barbells or … implant grade titanium barbells—whichever clients [prefer],” declares Dohoney.
- Implant-grade stainless steel: This is the kind of metal most commonly used to produce jewelry for piercings, specifically implant-grade stainless steel. Most people tolerate stainless steel because it comes in so many varieties, so there are very few problems with it. If you have a nickel allergy, you should avoid using this metal because it might irritate your skin.
- Titanium: Because titanium does not contain nickel, it will not irritate the piercing site or potentially cause allergic reactions. Additionally, titanium comes in a variety of colors and styles, is lightweight, and is corrosion-resistant.
What To Do Before Getting A Tongue Piercing
The first thing you should do is assess your general health. When you have a cold or the flu, waiting until you feel better before getting your piercing is recommended. Your immune system is already working hard to handle your small illness, so you don’t need to worry about a piercing while it deals with it.
In the case of diabetes, you should ensure that it is well controlled and ask your doctor if it is okay to get pierced. Wound healing is slower for diabetics than for people without diabetes.
The idea of you getting your tongue pierced may not be very appealing to your doctor. Make sure you listen to him no matter what he says. He has medical expertise, and you are paying him for it.
The piercer may see that you have a doctor’s note before he does the procedure if you inform him of your medical condition. By performing a piercing that could harm you or ruin his reputation, a responsible piercer will not want to risk his reputation.
You should pay attention to some things to make your piercing experience as stress-free as you can. Your piercer will have the basics covered, but you can do some things to make it the best you can be.
It is best not to drink alcohol the night before you have your tongue pierced. Even though you might think it would be cool to show up for your piercing still drunk after a night of drinking, there are plenty of problems with that scenario.
It is possible to have a piercing done while under the influence of alcohol because alcohol makes your blood thinner. This can make your piercing more likely to bleed heavily. Intoxicated people may faint or panic when they see all that blood. In either one of those scenarios, neither you nor the piercer would enjoy it. For this reason, you should avoid drinking alcohol.
It is best to avoid going out all night and partying with your friends the day before your appointment. Be sure you get a good night’s sleep and are adequately hydrated.
It is vital that you brush your teeth well before getting your tongue pierced and that your breath is fresh before getting your tongue pierced. Your piercer will appreciate your consideration. Your breath is horrible, so why make him suffer with you when you’re in pain? You’re going to feel pain in the near future.
Last but not least, a big meal should be taken an hour before your piercing. There is a possibility that eating the food will keep you from feeling queasy if there is a lot of blood or if you are nervous about the procedure.
Additionally, after a tongue piercing, you might need a while to regain your courage to eat again. It’s going to hurt and possibly be quite swollen on your tongue. When your mouth hurts so much, you won’t be able to eat much for a few days. If you’re not able to attend the meeting, you can at least prepare a big meal beforehand. It may be your last meal for days.
Your refrigerator and pantry should be stocked with foods that are soft and easy to eat for the first few days following the piercing because your mouth will be highly sensitive. There are plenty of good choices like popsicles, pudding, yogurts, noodles, and mashed potatoes. Another good choice is ice cream – letting it melt in your mouth may feel good as well.
The Procedure of Tongue Piercing
Under a bright light, the piercer may check the tongue’s underside for large blood vessels in order to mark a suitable place for the piercing. An under-the-tongue tongue piercing is usually performed from top to bottom with a piercing needle or from bottom to top with a cannula needle after the tongue is clamped with forceps. The jewelry you use for the first few weeks post-piercing should always be considerably longer than what you need ultimately to accommodate swelling. A tongue piercing can cause the tongue to swell up to double its original size within two days. There is a possibility of pain when you speak and eat, but this is not permanent.
Drinking cold beverages and sucking on crushed ice are commonly recommended by practitioners in order to reduce swelling. Taken in conjunction with Ibuprofen or similar anti-inflammatory drugs, Ibuprofen has been found to greatly decrease swelling that comes with tongue piercings. The piercing should not be consumed with alcohol, smoked, or eaten spicy until it is in some way healed (around two weeks), and it is always advisable to wash your mouth after eating or smoking with an alcohol-free mouthwash.
Occasionally, the newly pierced person experiences minor tongue or oral mucosa irritation after the swelling has subsided, which can discourage them from keeping the piercing. When you are able to follow the proper mouth washing routine, care during meals, and have some patience, your mouth will be sufficiently healed. When the person has completely recovered, it is recommended that the initial long barbell be replaced with a shorter one (to accommodate the initial swelling). It is sometimes involved in the initial piercing procedure price to include this second barbell. Often, it is difficult for a newly pierced person to replace the barbell with a shorter version because they are not experienced, so they ask for help from their piercer.
Most of the time, the second barbell is 2 mm – 4 mm smaller than the initial barbell, but the height should be adjusted according to the individual’s anatomy.
A second (short) healing period follows the replacement procedure. The subsequent stretching procedure can proceed if the irritation has not occurred.
Piercings on the tongue heal extremely quickly due to their exceptional healing ability. A small, fully healed hole can close up in a matter of hours, and larger, longer gaps can close in a matter of days. A hole may take several months or even years to heal depending on how stretched the area is. People with larger, stretched holes (greater than 4 g (5 mm)) may still be able to wear jewelry in their piercings years after surgery.
The general recommendation is to avoid piercings in the development stage of the body or for people who are incapable of caring for a recently pierced body part.
Placement of the tongue piercing
Piercings with “venom”: horizontally arranged two tongue piercings
In traditional tongue piercings, the piercing is placed along the midline of the tongue, in the middle of the mouth. From the tip of the tongue to about .76 inches (1.9 cm) back, this is usually the position. In this arrangement, the top of the jewelry is a little further back than the bottom, which lets it lean slightly back and away from your teeth, toward your higher part of the upper palate, where there is more room for it. As well as being located just in front of the attachment of the lingual frenulum, it is also a part of the epiglottis.
Getting the tongue frenulum pierced also called the tongue web piercing is a way to penetrate the frenulum underneath the tongue, known as the frenulum linguae. In the medical community, “venom bites” are two tongue piercings positioned side by side on the tongue. These piercings are considered to be more painful than a regular center-pierced tongue. Though the term “angel bite” can refer to two piercings in the tongue, arranged one in front of the other, the term is most commonly used for two Monroe piercings located on either side of the face. It is also possible for the tongue to have “snake-eyes”, which are horizontal curved bars through the tip of the tongue. This can be painful but it is mostly unnoticeable. A (stretched) tongue piercing can be used as a first step towards tongue splitting.
Risks Of Tongue Piercing
Tongue piercing has been documented to cause blood-borne infections that cause brain and heart abscesses (some of which have resulted in death); hepatitis B and C, HIV, tuberculosis, and tetanus infections; swelling of the tongue causing airway obstruction, swallowing or choking on loose jewelry, and damage to the gums and broken teeth. There are many complaints related to this condition, such as pain, scarring, excessive salivation, and damaged enamel.
After a tongue piercing, you will be likely to experience speech impediments. It is possible to experience a limited range of tongue motion after a double tongue piercing. There is also the risk of experiencing numbness.
- Approximately 11% to 41% of subjects wearing tongue ornaments experience trauma to the mouth such as dental fractures and wear.
- Depending on the length of the tongue ornament, 19% to 68% of our subjects will experience gingival recession. Alternatively, the alveolar tooth-bearing bone may also be compromised, posing a threat to the stability and durability of the teeth and requiring surgery for periodontal regeneration.
- Comparing non-tongue-pierced and tongue-pierced individuals, a higher prevalence of Candida albicans colonization was observed in young individuals with tongue piercings.
Risks and Oral Health Issues Associated With Tongue Piercings
Experimenting with a new tattoo or piercing can be extremely exciting. It is important to know the risks associated with piercings before you make a decision:
- Reactions caused by allergies
- The presence of oral complications, such as cracked or chipped teeth, gum damage, or swelling of the tongue (which may affect swallowing, chewing, and breathing)
- In the first few days following the procedure, there may be some pain and swelling
- Redness and pain in the skin can be caused by skin infections
- Scarring is another form of skin disease
- Viruses such as Hepatitis B, HIV, and Hepatitis C spread through the blood
- Jewelry that has been accidentally ripped out can damage or tear the skin.
There are several risks associated with oral piercings, but they are relatively common, which is why you need to be aware of how they impact the health of your gums, teeth, and mouth. Dental professionals are also commonly trusted to treat patients with oral piercings, so speak with your dentist before making a decision.
Cracking, Chipping, and Tooth Decay
In the first few days after getting your tongue pierced, you might discover that you bump your jewelry against your teeth when you talk, eat, or even bite it. Your gums are at risk of injury if you engage in this behavior, which can lead to cracked, scratched, or sensitive teeth. This can also lead to damaged fillings. All tongue piercings put your health at risk. You might wish for tongue rings or piercings that don’t damage teeth, but that isn’t possible. A tongue piercing can cause tooth damage, so talk to your dentist about ways to reduce this habit, as well as possible approaches to covering it. In addition to cracking and chipping, jewelry can also accumulate plaque due to its ability to trap food and debris, which can lead to decay and cavities on the teeth.
Having a moist environment such as your mouth makes it a perfect place for bacteria to grow and thrive. Especially when you make an incision or insert jewelry, that raises the risk of infection in the mouth. Infected piercings can cause swelling of your tongue, block your airway, and possibly even result in death.
When you have your tongue pierced, you may experience temporary nerve damage, which is why your tongue may feel numb. Damage to your taste buds or the movements of your mouth can sometimes be permanent – affecting not only your sense of taste but also your ability to eat.
Treatment and Home Remedies
Tongue piercings generally do not require any special treatment or medication. Cleaning the piercing is usually as simple as rinsing with a saline solution several times per day. Some other strategies for speeding healing include:
- Brushing your teeth regularly is an important part of keeping your mouth clean
- After eating, you should rinse your piercing
- Smoking is not allowed
- The first few days should be devoted to minimizing talk
- Keeping the piercing out of the reach of children
- Kisses and oral sex should be avoided while healing, as should contact with other people’s bodily fluids
- Never share straws, plates, toothbrushes, or other items that come into contact with another person’s mouth
If you have an infected piercing, do not attempt to treat it by yourself. Infections can cause serious health problems. In the worst cases, it can cause severe scarring and may spread to other parts of the body. The best course of action is to schedule an appointment with a doctor if one suspects an infection.
When to see a doctor
If you experience any of the following symptoms, see a doctor:
- When you have a fever, intense pain, new swellings in your neck, or swollen glands, there is an infection
- The infection of a piercing does not go away within a few days of healing
- When bleeding persists, the piercing becomes infected
- When piercings erupt, they produce green or yellow pus or have a bad smell
- Inflammation of the gums or pain in the teeth
- A swelling or abnormal growth of tissue is present elsewhere in the mouth
- Patients who experience painful or unusual symptoms may wish to follow up with the piercer in addition to seeing a doctor.
In addition to home remedies, many piercers can help ease discomfort and expedite the healing process. It is important to note that the advice of a piercer cannot replace that of a doctor.
Stages of the Healing Process
Placing a tongue ring creates a wound in the mouth, which is one of the most bacteria-filled places on the body. Cleanliness remains an issue with tongue piercings, which makes them more likely to be infected during the healing process.
Although studies have been limited about how common tongue piercing infections are, the warm, moist location of the piercing creates prime conditions for the growth of bacteria. It is possible that people wearing tongue rings may be at risk for food contamination.
Based on a small survey, three out of 51trustedsource people with tongue piercings contracted an infection. By caring properly for the wound, you can reduce the chance of infection and aid in keeping the piercing in place.
Here you will find information about the stage-by-stage healing process, as well as some risks and treatment options associated with tongue piercing.
In the case of tongue piercings that heal properly, the body treats the wound like a scar.
Because everybody has a different body, the healing process varies for each individual. In addition, people who have weak immune systems because of diabetes, cancer, HIV, and some medications are more likely to need longer to heal and more susceptible to infection.
When someone has their tongue pierced, they can expect to experience the following stages as it heals:
After the piercing: Days 1–3
The wound will likely feel very sore and irritated for a few minutes after it was pierced. Speaking may be difficult and adapting to the new sensation in the mouth can be difficult as well. They should, however, avoid touching, knocking, or otherwise irritating the piercing, as this can cause it to become infected.
When eating at first, you may need to put food directly on the teeth in order to chew. The first few days after getting the jewelry placed, you can also drink smoothies or consume liquid foods until you get used to eating with the jewelry in place.
The tooth is still developing at this early stage, and it is crucial to rinse the mouth several times each day with a saline solution. Piercers usually recommend mixing a quarter teaspoon of iodine-free salt with 8 ounces of warm water before piercing. Only use stronger solutions and antibiotic creams if your doctor has recommended them. Please follow any instructions provided by your piercer.
Additionally, after getting a new tongue piercing, you should use a new toothbrush. By doing this, you reduce the chance of accidentally introducing more bacteria into the wound.
Swelling and inflammation: Days 4–10
It is common for the swelling to increase for several days after the piercing and to last for a week or more trusted Source. In some cases, there may be a bleed or oozing of the wound. The presence of a small amount of bleeding is normal, but an excess of bleeding may indicate an underlying problem. During the healing phase, the wound may also have whitish or clear fluid flowing from it.
Replace the shorter jewelry piece with the longer piece once the swelling lessens. Keep the longer piece in place for a longer period of time to avoid irritation and damage to the teeth. A piercer should do this to ensure safety.
Always wash your hands thoroughly before touching the piercing and use only sterile, new jewelry intended for the tongue.
It is during this stage that infections are most likely to occur. The following symptoms are indicative of infection:
- intense swelling
- worsening pain
- pus coming out of the wound
Early healing: Days 10–30
In fact, piercings heal from the outside in, so that the outermost tissue of the tongue is the first to heal. As a result, while the piercing might seem less inflamed, it actually continues to heal for a month or longer.
The healing process should have become less painful by this point, and the feel should have returned to normal at this stage. Although piercings may take some time to adapt to, it may not be necessary to remove it immediately.
Depending on how quickly the tongue heals, removing the jewelry or leaving it off for a short duration may cause the piercing to close.
Scarring and complete healing: Weeks 4–6
Ultimately, piercings result in scars, and these scars take some time to form.
The healing process usually takes between 4 and 6 weeks, assuming there are no complications. The piercing may end up painful or swollen after a period when it seemed fine if there is still swelling or pain after a month. This is a sign of an infection.
The body starts to treat the piercing as a scar after a few months, and it becomes less likely that the piercing will heal itself without jewelry. Furthermore, infection risks will be greatly reduced. Some people, however, are still vulnerable to infection if they have poor oral hygiene, weak immune systems, and mouth injuries.
Furthermore, tongue piercings may increase the risk of developing oral health problems, such as gum disease and tooth decay. It may be dangerous to have a tongue bar that is especially heavy or large because it may knock into one’s teeth. These problems can result in broken teeth, infection of the gums or teeth, as well as other oral health issues.
Cost of a Tongue Piercing
It varies significantly from place to place and person to person how much tongue piercing costs. The price may also vary based on how complicated the procedure is, what tools are used, and what jewelry is used, as well as the skill of the person performing the procedure.
It is important to consider that the cost of a tongue piercing will vary based on your specific circumstances-including your location, the shop or piercer you choose, the type of piercing, and much more. It can cost anywhere between $35 and $100 to get a tongue piercing. Furthermore, you will be charged two fees for piercings: first for the actual piercing, and second for the jewelry. Be prepared to spend a lot more money on quality jewelry-something you absolutely shouldn’t compromise on.
How will the piercing be affected if I pull my tongue back during the procedure?
It will be impossible for you to move your tongue because it can’t move at all. During a tongue piercing, a pair of forceps are used to hold onto the tongue so it can’t move. Piercings are also made with extremely sharp needles, which means that you won’t be able to feel anything before the piercing is complete.
Do my teeth have a chance of getting damaged?
If you wish, you can. If you get an oral piercing done, you are likely to damage your teeth as with any other type of piercing. By choosing matching jewelry or switching to smaller piercings after the first month, you can minimize this risk.
Is it possible for me to replace the jewelry myself?
The answer is an absolute yes. Almost all types of jewelry can be screwed on and off; taking it off can be done with ease without the help of anyone else.
Is it going to be strange to talk to you?
It is likely that you will talk strangely for a few days or so following your piercing because your tongue is swollen. That is to say, you will definitely speak in an odd way after having your piercing done.