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Tongue Piercings Causing Major Dental Problems

The next time your son or daughter asks for your permission to pierce their tongue, besides an emphatic No, ask them if they'd like to grow another tongue... That's what happened to a 20-year-old woman soon after her tongue piercing and wearing an inch-long "barbell" stud.

Tissue in the shape of a ball appeared on the patient's tongue after the piercing, then grew over four months time to the size of a marble. Surprisingly, that sudden growth didn't deter the young woman from wearing a stud (she replaced it with one that had a shorter shaft) and increased her use of an antibacterial mouthwash, another not so good idea either.

Eight months later, that stud wasn't as fashionable or comfortable to wear anymore, and for good reason: The scar tissue left behind was the size of a large pea, and according to her dentist, it's permanent too. Probably, a good reason you don't want to have any loose metals floating around your mouth disrupting your body's natural energies.

By the numbers, the tongue is the most popular spot for a body piercing (81 percent) and nearly 11 percent of university students have had it done, according to a Journal of the American Dental Association report. Nevertheless, trying to be cool by piercing your body isn't healthy at all.

USA Today March 28, 2006

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