Care for Oral Piercings
Unlike ear piercings, mouth jewelry makes frequent physical contact with irritating substances, and therefore requires a strong commitment to care. Contact your physician or dentist if you feel any symptoms of an infection, such as inflammation, swelling or fever. Be sure to:
- keep the area around the piercing clean.
- use an antibacterial mouth rinse such as Colgate® Total® Advance Pro Shield™ after every meal.
- avoid clicking the jewelry against the teeth.
- check the tightness of the jewelry, with clean hands, on a regular basis.
- remove piercings when playing sports and wear a mouth guard to protect the teeth.
- schedule regular dental visits.
- maintain good home habits by brushing and flossing.
No matter how careful you are, avoiding a tongue piercing altogether is the healthiest course of action. But if you are considering having your tongue pierced, consult with your dentist first. Piercings of the mouth aren't an everyday art form, and can impact several aspects of your health without a mature approach.
About the author: Donna Rounsaville, RDH, BS, has been a dental hygienist in private practice for 31 years. She has used her experience with the prevention of dental problems and the importance of healthy eating to educate children in local schools in her hometown of Flemington, New Jersey. Donna is passionate about infection control and office safety for dental workers, providing yearly training to her office colleagues. Active with the Girl Scouts as a leader and with children's liturgy at her church, Donna uses her communication and leadership skills to motivate young people in her community. She has been writing for Colgate since 2013.