Potential dental health problems from oral piercings

Potential dental health problems from oral piercings

Potential dental health problems from oral piercings

As a Lansdowne dental office serving Ashburn and Leesburg Virginia, our patients often ask, ‘What are the potential dental health problems from oral piercings?’

Piercing may be a hot fashion trend, but your smile may not look so hot if you get a piercing on your tongue or lip. Over time, oral piercings can lead to serious dental problems affecting both the teeth and gums.

Including jewelry, the average tongue piercing costs about $40, but it can lead to thousands of dollars of dental work later in life. Fractured teeth is one of the most common problems associated with oral piercings. Nearly half of all people with tongue piercings have chipped teeth that can only be repaired through dental treatments like crowns, fillings or extractions.

Oral piercings can also lead to gingivitis, a painful condition that causes bloody, sore gums. Without treatment, gingivitis can lead to periodontitis, a condition that can cause tooth loss and extreme sensitivity to heat and cold.

Our Lansdowne dentist knows you may love your tongue piercing, but over 80 species of bacteria love it too. These microscopic germs form little communities known as biofilms on piercing studs in the mouth. Over time, the bacteria becomes resistant to mouthwash and can spread to other areas of the body, causing serious infections and health risks, including heart disease.

Mouth ulcers are another serious concern that develop when the tongue suffers from constant irritation, like a piercing. The ulcers can lead to oral cancer.

People with tongue piercings are also more likely to develop Ludwig’s angina, a condition caused by a severe infection of the jaws and mouth. In response to the infection, the tongue can become so swollen that it inhibits breathing.

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