Oral piercings or tongue splitting may look cool, but they can be dangerous to your health. That’s because your mouth contains millions of bacteria, and infection and swelling often occur with mouth piercings. Oral piercing could also lead to more serious infection like hepatitis and endocarditis. 

Here are seven life-changing reasons not to get a tongue piercing:

1. Damage to the dentition. The jewellery placed in your mouth is very likely to chip or break a tooth, which will require a filling or a crown to repair it. This will happen again and again from either wearing down the filling or crown or from breaking it repeatedly.

2. Effect on periodontal tissues. Your gums can start to recede from the constant rubbing of the jewellery. You will have to be referred to the periodontist for surgery to correct this constant rubbing or lose that tooth.

3. Swallowing/ Inhalation. The jewellery can come undone and get stuck in your lungs. If you are lucky and it is just the ball,it may have the chance of passing through, but if it is the longer portion this could get lodged or tear internally causing major health risks for you.

4. Infection. Using unsterile instruments can spread HIV infections directly to you. One type of disease is endocarditis, an inflammation of the heart valve or tissue, to correct would require surgery. Brain abscesses have also been related to tongue piercing. Ludwig’s angina, an infection in the neck and muscles that, if not caught early, can choke a person to death.

5. Loss of blood. The tongue contains large blood vessels, if one gets perforated it can only be closed with surgery, not the piercing technician. When the piercing occurs, the technician can hit a nerve which can cause either swelling of the tongue or for you to not be able to use your tongue properly.

6. Saliva drooling. Having the jewellery through your tongue causes you to produce excess saliva , so when you are talking you are spitting on people which could result in spreading the disease.

7. Allergic Reactions: The most widely reported allergic reaction to piercing is contact dermatitis produced by nickel, chromium or nickel-cobalt.

Of course, the best option is not to get tongue piercing and if you already have piercings the best is to consider removing mouth jewellery before it causes a problem. The piercing will be an added responsibility to your life, requiring constant attention and upkeep.