Caring for Your Tongue Piercing: Essential Tips for Proper Maintenance

Proper care for your tongue piercing is vital, as improper maintenance can lead to infections. Here are some straightforward steps to follow for cleaning and maintaining your tongue piercing, which will aid in its perfect healing:

To ensure a safe tongue piercing experience, visiting a reputable and hygienic piercing studio that uses sterilised needles is crucial.

  1. During the initial healing period, alleviate any discomfort with ice chips and refrain from consuming alcohol, spicy foods, tobacco, or chewing gum to avoid irritation. 
  2. Oral hygiene by using alcohol-free mouthwash throughout the day, about 4-5 times. In case of irritation, you can apply sea salt or anti-microbial soap directly to the piercing for relief.
  3. Once the initial swelling subsides, consider changing your jewellery to prevent the risk of infection.

First Phase: Getting the Piercing

 Before getting a tongue piercing, it’s essential to take several steps to ensure a safe and successful experience:

Obtain permission if you’re under 18. Ensure to get approval from parents or guardian before proceeding with the piercing. This ensures you won’t spend time and effort caring for a piercing you may have to remove later.

  1. Research reputable piercers. Look for a piercer with a strong reputation at a well-established tattoo or piercing studio. Read customer reviews online to gauge the piercer’s credibility and verify that they’ve completed a thorough apprenticeship under a respected professional.
  2. Inspect the cleanliness of the shop. The piercing studio must maintain a sterile and hygienic environment. If the shop appears to be more impeccably clean, consider finding another place for your piercing.
  1. Confirm the use of sterile utensils. When getting the piercing, ensure that the piercer opens a package of unused, sterilised needles for your procedure. This step is essential in preventing infections and the spread of diseases.
  2. Prepare for some discomfort. Expect minimal pain during the piercing, with the initial healing and swelling being the most uncomfortable aspects of the process.
  3. Be aware of the procedure. The piercer will likely use a clamp to hold your tongue in place during the piercing to prevent any sudden movements or jerking.

By following these precautions and being informed about the process, you can ensure a safer and more comfortable tongue-piercing experience.

Second Phase: Surviving the Initial Healing Period

Surviving the initial healing phase of a tongue piercing requires knowing what to anticipate and taking appropriate measures: Be aware of the signs: During the initial 3-5 days after getting the piercing, anticipate swelling, slight bleeding, bruising, and tenderness around the pierced area. These are common during the initial healing period.

  1. Manage swelling with ice chips: To alleviate swelling, consume plenty of ice-cold water and allow small ice chips to melt in your mouth. Avoid sucking on the ice chips to prevent freezing your mouth.
  2. Avoid harmful substances and activities: It’s advisable to steer clear of tobacco, alcohol, and excessive caffeine consumption during the first week of healing. Additionally, refrain from oral sexual contact, chewing gum, and playing with your jewellery to prevent irritation.
  3. Be cautious with food choices: Avoid spicy, hot, salty, or acidic foods, as they can cause discomfort and burning sensations around the piercing site.
  4. Expect discharge: Despite following aftercare instructions diligently, it’s normal to experience whitish discharge from the piercing hole. This discharge is not necessarily a sign of infection, but ensure it doesn’t appear pus-like.

By following these guidelines, you can navigate through the initial healing period of your tongue piercing with greater ease and minimize potential complications.

Third Phase: Cleaning it Properly

Here are the steps to properly care for your tongue piercing:

  1. Rinse your mouth: Use alcohol-free mouthwash 4 or 5 times a day for about a minute each time, including after meals and before bedtime, to keep the area clean and reduce the risk of infection.
  2. Keep the piercing clean: by using sea salt on the outside 2 to 3 times a day, and washing it with gentle antibacterial soap up to twice daily. This helps prevent bacteria from accumulating and helps the piercing heal faster.
  3. Wash your hands: Before cleaning or handling the piercing or jewellery, always wash your hands thoroughly with antibacterial soap to prevent introducing harmful bacteria.

Ensure the piercing is dried thoroughly after cleaning by gently patting it with a paper towel or napkin, avoiding the use of bath towels or cloth. Using disposable paper products helps minimise the risk of transferring germs and bacteria to the piercing site.

By following these steps consistently, you can maintain proper hygiene and facilitate the healing process of your tongue piercing.

Fourth Phase: Wearing the Right Jewellery

Here are some essential steps regarding maintaining and changing your tongue-piercing jewellery:

  1. Regularly check the balls: Periodically inspect them on your tongue-piercing bar to ensure they haven’t become loose or unscrewed. Use one hand to stabilize the bottom ball while tightening the top ball with the other to prevent accidental dislodging.
  2. Change jewellery after the swelling subsides: Consider replacing the original jewellery with shorter pieces once the initial swelling has gone down. Visit your piercer for this change, especially during the healing process, to ensure it’s done safely and without complications.
  3. Select the right style: After the initial healing phase, you can choose from various jewellery styles for your tongue piercing. Be mindful of any metal allergies or sensitivities when selecting materials for your jewellery.