Oral piercings are popular among young adults and adolescents. Piercings are the cool thing to have, and they give people a way to express themselves. Piercings can interfere with your speech or your ability to chew and swallow. Many people also wonder if their choice to have a piercing can lead to infection.
Oral piercings are considered trauma because they involve breaking the surface of the skin or tissue in the mouth. This does involve a risk for infection because the piercing gives bacteria an area to gather. Our mouths have larger amounts of bacteria, and piercings that are on the lips have a greater risk for infection. This is because they are towards the skin surface.
Even though oral piercings pose a risk for infection, oral tissue has the ability to heal quickly. This decreases the chance for bacteria to cause an infection. In addition, piercings can increase the risk for contracting a viral infection depending on where the piercing is located. Choosing a clean and reputable facility for your piercing is important. Sterilization and good hygiene is necessary with any type of piercing.
The first thing to consider is your oral hygiene. In order to keep your teeth, mouth, and the piercing area clean at all times you must have proper hygiene. This also helps to keep your risk of infection lower. Keeping the area clean after meals is important. Brushing and flossing as well as using an antiseptic mouthwash can help avoid bacteria from collecting around the piercing area.
Watching for signs of infection can help you get in front of an issue. Symptoms of an infection include fever, chills, and redness or swelling around the piercing area. We encourage you to contact our office immediately if you think you may have an infection, or notice unusual swelling in your mouth or tongue.
An infection from an oral piercing can be treated by a dental professional. It is important to seek medical attention immediately if you suspect you may have an oral infection. Catching the infection early is important, and the infection can be easily managed. Typically antibiotics will be needed, and in some cases depending on the severity of the infection the piercing may have to be removed. This will help the infection heal quicker.
If you are concerned you may have an infection due to an oral piercing we encourage you to contact our office. Our staff is available to answer any questions or concerns you may have. Leaving an infection untreated can lead to more serious health issues. Treating an infection as soon as possible can help stop the infection in its tracks, and prevent the infection from getting worse.
Contact our friendly staff to schedule an appointment in our office. We are happy to assist you, and we accommodate all of our patients to ensure they can be seen right away. Let us help get you on the road to recovery.