How Do Oral Piercings Affect Your Dental and Oral Health?
While it is currently estimated that 5% of people have oral piercings, these types of piercings are hardly new: oral piercings have been observed on preserved bodies thousands of years old. What is new, however, is an appreciation for the oral health implications of these piercings.
The study, "Oral and Dental Complications of Intra-Oral Piercing," suggests that the implications are significant. Specifically, researchers found that among those with oral piercings, 14% were observed to have fractured teeth. Moreover, 27% exhibited gingival recession, commonly called gum recession.
The issues and complications with oral piercings can begin immediately after the piecing procedure. "Oral Piercings: Implications for Dental Professionals," identified post-piercing complications that can include infection and discomfort. Longer term issues such as tooth abrasion, plaque accumulation, gum recession were also identified.
Given these potential oral health issues, it is important for those with oral piercings to discuss them with a dental professional. Dentists and hygienists can provide educational information that includes piercing aftercare and ongoing hygiene, as well as safety-related guidance such as the need to remove the piercing when participating in sports.
With a popularity that spans thousands of years, oral piercings are likely here to stay. However, proper oral hygiene and safety practices are important to help those with oral piercings stay safe and comfortable.