Things to Know Before Getting A Tongue Piercing

Tongue piercing involves puncturing a part of the tongue to insert a piece of jewellery, often a barbell. It’s a statement of style for many, but it’s also important to understand what it entails before diving in.

The spot for the piercing is usually chosen carefully to avoid any major blood vessels and nerves. This type of piercing has been part of various cultures for ages, but in recent years, it’s become more mainstream as a form of personal expression.

Scroll down to learn about how tongue piercing works, how long it takes to heal, how you should take care of it, and everything related to the topic.

How Does Tongue Piercing Work?- The Procedure

Now, let’s talk about how it works. The process of getting a tongue piercing is fairly straightforward but must be done with the help of a professional.

  • Initially, the piercer will examine your tongue to ensure it’s suitable for piercing. They’ll look for the right spot that avoids veins and gives the best aesthetic result.
  • Once they’ve marked the spot, they’ll use a sterilised needle to create a hole. It’s a quick process, but precision is key.
  • After the needle goes through, the jewellery, typically a barbell, is inserted. While it might sound a bit daunting, it’s usually over before you know it.

Remember, aftercare is crucial to avoid any infections and to ensure your piercing heals properly. Be ready to embrace a new routine of cleaning and perhaps some temporary changes to what you eat and drink. We’ll talk more about it later.

Cute Tongue Piercing image
Cute Tongue Piercing images

Does A Tongue Piercing Hurt Too Much?

Does getting your tongue pierced hurt a lot?

Well, pain is a bit of a personal thing, isn’t it? What might be a pinch for one person could feel like more of a sting for another. But generally speaking, most people say that getting their tongue pierced is less painful than other piercings.

The actual piercing bit is pretty quick – it’s a sharp sensation that doesn’t linger for too long.

What’s more, after the piercing’s done, you might feel discomfort or swelling for a few days. It’s nothing too terrible, but it’s something to be ready for. Eating and talking might feel a bit awkward at first, but it gets better as the swelling goes down.

Keeping up with the aftercare, like cleaning your piercing properly, can help a lot with the healing and keep any soreness to a minimum.

Types of Tongue Piercing

Now, let’s get into the different types to help you find the perfect fit for your style and comfort.

1. Midline Tongue Piercing

Midline Tongue Piercing is the classic style where the jewellery is placed in the centre of the tongue. It’s the most common type and is known for being a bit of a statement piece.

The placement is usually about 19 millimetres from the tip of the tongue, right in the middle. This type is popular for its straightforward nature and ease of healing. When it comes to jewellery, straight barbells are typically used.

The length of the barbell can vary depending on the thickness of your tongue, and it’s important to get the right size for comfort and safety.

2. Venom Piercing

When you place two separate piercings (symmetrically) on each side of the tongue, mimicking the look of snake fangs, it’s called venom piercing. It’s a bit more adventurous than the Midline, offering a unique look.

Each piercing is done parallel to the other, which requires a skilled hand for proper alignment. The healing process for Venom Piercings can be a bit more complex due to the two separate wounds. Short, straight barbells are usually the go-to for this style.

Please note that this type might affect your speech initially, given its positioning.

3. Horizontal Tongue Piercing

Horizontal Tongue Piercing, also known as snake eyes, is quite distinctive. It’s placed horizontally on top of the tongue, with both ends of the jewellery visible.

This type is a surface piercing, meaning the jewellery sits on the surface rather than going completely through the tongue. It’s a bit of a bold choice and less common due to the potential risks involved, like movement difficulties and increased chances of rejection.

4. Frenulum Linguae Piercing

Frenulum Linguae Piercing, or tongue web piercing, is for those who fancy something a bit more hidden. It’s done on the web of skin under the tongue, known as the frenulum.

This piercing is less noticeable but can be a fun surprise when you show it off. It’s less invasive than other tongue piercings and generally heals quickly. Due to its location, smaller barbells or rings are used.

However, this piercing isn’t the best choice for everyone. Why? It’s because some people’s frenulums might be too thin or not prominent enough for a piercing.

5. Multiple Tongue Piercings

Multiple Tongue Piercings are for the bold and adventurous. This involves having more than one piercing on the tongue, which can be a combination of any of the types mentioned above.

It’s a way to create a unique pattern or design. The placement and spacing depend on your tongue’s anatomy and the piercer’s expertise. Healing can be more complex due to the multiple wounds, and it’s crucial to maintain proper hygiene.

This style allows for a variety of jewellery choices, from barbells to studs, offering a creative and personalised look.

Healing Time and Aftercare Tips for Tongue Piercing

Tongue piercings go through distinct healing phases, and knowing what to expect can really help.

Initially, you’ll face the swelling phase, which typically lasts about a week. Your tongue might feel quite bulky, and speaking or eating could be a bit tricky.

As this phase winds down, you’ll enter the healing phase, which can take anywhere from four to eight weeks. During this time, the piercing gradually settles down and the body adjusts.

Aftercare Tips

  • Rinse with Care: After each meal and before bed, gently rinse your mouth with a saline solution or an alcohol-free mouthwash to prevent infection and aid healing.
  • Avoid Alcoholic Drinks: Alcohol can irritate the fresh piercing, so it’s best to avoid alcoholic beverages during the initial healing period.
  • Steer Clear of Spicy and Hot Foods: Foods that are spicy, acidic, or too hot can cause discomfort and irritation at the piercing site. Opt for milder, cooler foods instead.
  • Use Ice Chips to Reduce Swelling: Sucking on ice chips can help alleviate swelling in the first few days after the piercing.
  • Opt for Soft Foods: To minimize discomfort and the risk of injury, eat soft, non-abrasive foods like yoghurt, soup, and mashed potatoes.
  • No Smoking: Smoking can introduce harmful chemicals and bacteria to the piercing, significantly delaying the healing process.
  • Avoid Alcohol-Based Mouthwash: Such mouthwashes can be harsh on a new piercing. Look for gentle, alcohol-free options instead.
Tongue Rings for Guys
Tongue Rings for Guys

Tongue Piercing Jewlery

Let’s have a look at the jewelry options available for tongue piercing. We will also share some material suggestions and a sizing guide for the jewellery with you.

Available Jewelry Options

Straight Barbells: The most popular choice, offering simplicity and comfort. They come in various designs, including gem-studded ends.

Beaded Rings or Circular Barbells: These can provide a unique look, though they might be more prone to movement and irritation.

Retainers: Useful for making your piercing less visible. These are often made of clear or flesh-toned materials.

Tongue Jewelry
Tongue Jewelry

Screw-On Balls and Attachments: Straight barbells can be customized with various screw-on attachments, such as different colored balls, spikes, or even small charms.

Vibrating Tongue Rings: A novelty option, these barbells contain a small battery-powered element that vibrates.

UV and Glow in the Dark Barbells: Made from acrylic, these barbells glow under UV light and are popular in club or party settings.

Plastic Barbells: Lighter than metal, these are often used during sporting activities or when a less noticeable piercing is desired.

Bioplast Barbells: These are flexible and hypoallergenic, reducing the risk of damage to the teeth and gums.

Gold and Precious Metals: For those looking for a luxurious touch, gold and other precious metals offer an elegant option, though they are typically more expensive.

Material Suggestions

Surgical Stainless Steel: A popular choice due to its low risk of allergic reactions and affordability.

Titanium: Ideal for those with sensitive skin or allergies. It’s lightweight and highly biocompatible.

Niobium: Similar to titanium, niobium is hypoallergenic and comes in various colours.

Acrylic: Used mainly in retainers, it’s lightweight and less noticeable but not recommended for long-term wear due to its porous nature.

Sizing Guide

Length: Initially, a longer barbell is used to accommodate swelling. This is typically around 18-20mm. After the swelling subsides, switch to a shorter barbell (usually 16mm) to reduce the risk of biting and improve comfort.

Gauge: The standard gauge for tongue piercings is 14G (1.6mm). It’s important to stick to this size to avoid the risk of the piercing shrinking or the jewellery becoming embedded.

Tongue Piercing Bars
Tongue Piercing Bars

What Are The Risks of Getting A Tongue Piercing?

Getting a tongue piercing comes with certain risks, but being well-informed and taking the right precautions can help you manage and minimize these potential issues:

  • Infection: The mouth is full of bacteria, which can lead to infections in a new piercing. To mitigate this risk, maintain strict oral hygiene, use an alcohol-free mouthwash, and rinse with saline solution after meals.
  • Swelling and Pain: Initial swelling and discomfort are common. Manage this by sucking on ice chips, eating soft foods, and taking over-the-counter pain relief if necessary.
  • Damage to Teeth and Gums: Metal jewellery can chip teeth and irritate gums. Opt for softer materials like bioplast or acrylic, especially for the barbell ends, and avoid playing with the jewellery in your mouth.
  • Allergic Reactions: Allergies to certain metals can cause issues. Choose hypoallergenic materials like titanium or surgical stainless steel to avoid this problem.
  • Difficulty in Speaking and Eating: Initially, you may find it hard to speak clearly or eat normally. Give yourself time to adjust, and start with soft, non-spicy foods.

How Much Does It Cost to Get A Tongue Piercing?

The cost of getting a tongue piercing varies from different places and is based on some other factors. Here’s a general price breakdown for you.

Basic Cost: On average, you might expect to pay between £30 to £50 for a standard tongue piercing. This usually includes the piercing service and a basic piece of jewellery.

Premium Options: If you opt for high-end or specialised jewellery, such as those made from gold, titanium, or with unique designs, the cost can increase significantly. These options can push the price upwards of £60 to £100 or more.

Additional Expenses: Remember to factor in potential additional costs such as aftercare products (e.g., saline solution, mouthwash) which can add a bit to your overall expenses.

Geographical Variations: Prices can also vary based on the studio’s location. Piercing studios in larger cities or more affluent areas often charge more than those in smaller towns or less expensive regions.

Wrapping Up

So, yes, tongue piercing is a unique form of self-expression, offering various styles. While it’s generally not too painful, proper aftercare is crucial for healing and preventing risks like infection or damage to teeth.

Choose jewellery wisely, considering material and comfort, and remember that healing can take up to 8 weeks. Always go to a reputable piercer and follow their advice.

Above all, keep hygiene top-notch and enjoy your new piercing safely!

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