Consumer Health: Preventing complications with piercings

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A piercing is the creation of an opening in a part of the body for the insertion of jewelry. Piercings are popular, especially among adolescents and young adults.

Piercings might be more common than ever, but don’t take piercing lightly. Potential risks and complications include:

  • Allergic reactions.
  • Skin infections and scars, as well as keloids, which are an overgrowth of scar tissue.
  • Bloodborne diseases.
  • Tearing or trauma.
  • Specific to tongue piercing, damage to teeth and gums, and difficulty chewing, swallowing and breathing.

If you’re interested in getting a piercing, here’s what you need to know about how safety precautions, the placement of your piercing and how well you care for it can affect your risk of infection and proper healing.

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