You might not be surprised anymore to see people with pierced tongues, lips or cheeks, but you might be surprised to know just how dangerous these piercings can be.
There are many risks involved with oral piercings, including chipped or cracked teeth, blood clots, blood poisoning, heart infections, brain abscess, nerve disorders (trigeminal neuralgia), receding gums or scar tissue. Your mouth contains millions of bacteria, and infection is a common complication of oral piercing. Your tongue could swell large enough to close off your airway!
Common symptoms after piercing include pain, swelling, infection, an increased flow of saliva, and injuries to gum tissue. Difficult-to-control bleeding or nerve damage can result if a blood vessel or nerve bundle is in the path of the piercing. So follow the advice of the American Dental Association and give your mouth a break – skip the mouth jewelry.
Tobacco in any form can jeopardize your child’s health and cause incurable damage. Teach your child about the dangers of tobacco.
Smokeless tobacco, also called spit, chew, or snuff and e-cigarettes or vaping are often used by teens who believe that it is a safe alternative to smoking cigarettes. This is an unfortunate misconception. Studies show that spit tobacco may be more addictive than smoking cigarettes and may be more difficult to quit. Teens that use these tobacco products may be interested to know that one (1) can of snuff per day delivers as much nicotine as 60 cigarettes. In as little as three to four (3-4) months, smokeless tobacco use can cause periodontal disease and produce pre-cancerous lesions called leukoplakias.
If your teen is a tobacco or e-cigarette user you should watch for the following that could be early signs of oral cancer:
Because the early signs of oral cancer usually are not painful, people often ignore them. When oral cancer is not caught in the early stages extensive sometimes disfiguring surgery may be required. Even worse, cancer can kill.
Help your child avoid tobacco in any form. By doing so, they will avoid bringing cancer-causing chemicals in direct contact with their tongue, gums and cheek.