Oral Piercings Can Lead To Both Gum And Tooth Damage

by | Jan 11, 2021

Many people choose to pierce different body parts as a way to express themselves and enhance their appearance. However, oral piercings—which include lip, tongue, cheek, and even uvula piercings—can be harmful to your teeth and gums. Before you decide to get an oral piercing, learn about the ways these body modifications can damage your mouth.

Risk Of Infection

Your mouth is home to lots of bacteria, which makes the risk of infection from an oral piercing quite high. While piercings on other body parts can usually heal relatively seamlessly, oral piercings are constantly coming into contact with food, plaque, and bacteria that can enter the piercing site and cause an infection. An infected tongue piercing is especially dangerous, as it could cause your tongue to swell so much that it blocks your airway and makes it difficult to breathe. Plus, infections can spread throughout the body if they are not treated quickly.

Damage To Teeth And Gums

An oral piercing is likely to click or scratch against your teeth and gums repeatedly as you talk, chew, and swallow throughout the day. People with oral piercings often have a habit of readjusting or playing with the jewelry using their teeth or tongues as well. All of these repetitive motions can damage your tooth enamel and irritate your gums. Gum irritation from an oral piercing can also lead to heightened tooth sensitivity. You could even chip or crack a tooth if you accidentally bite down on your oral piercing, and oral piercings can also damage dental fillings or other restorative dental work.


Your tongue, lip, or cheek can tear if an oral piercing is accidentally pulled or ripped out, or if the jewelry gets caught on something. Not only would this be painful, but it could also cause scarring and redness, and the torn piercing site would be even more vulnerable to infection. If you are thinking about getting an oral piercing, talk to us about the risks and responsibilities involved.