Oral piercing (usually on the tongue or around the lips) is one of the more popular fashion trends in recent years. Many people fail to realize that that even precautions taken during the installation of a piece of piercing jewelry are not enough to eliminate off harmful, long-term consequences such as cracked, fractured,or chipped teeth, swelling, infection, problems with swallowing and taste, and ugly scars. Add to this the possibility of choking on a piece of dislodged jewelry and one has to ask if the risks are warranted.
The most serious long-term health problems from oral piercing is damage to the soft tissues such as the cheeks, gums and palate, as well as opportunistic, active infections. Any kind of body piercing may also put you at risk of contracting deadly infectious diseases such as HIV and hepatitis.
A common form of body piercing involves the tongue. Tongue piercings have been known to cause blocked airways (from a swollen tongue). In some cases, a tongue piercing will cause uncontrolled bleeding.