Oral piercings may be the latest fad, but if you are someone you know is considering oral piercings, Rodeo Dental explains that there could be some serious side effects.

According to Web MD, oral piercings can cause infection, blood borne diseases, gum disease, tooth breakage, and an extremely serious condition known as Endocarditis.

Your mouth is host to millions of bacteria. Add the wound that is created by the piercing and you could be asking for trouble. If the wound becomes infected or the jewelry is not sanitized properly, you may get an infection. If left untreated, infections could become life threatening.

If you have your tongue, lip, cheek or uvula pierced you are putting yourself at risk for hepatitis B and C and the Herpes Simplex virus.

A loss of sensation or numbness is natural after oral piercings, but in some cases, that numbness could become permanent if the piercer accidentally hits a nerve. Prolonged and excessive bleeding could also occur if the piercer should puncture a blood vessel.

People who have had their lip, tongue, cheek or uvula pierced tend to play with the jewelry. If the barbells, rings, or studs hit a filling, crown, or cap, your dental restorations could become damaged. Mouth jewelry can also crack or break healthy teeth as well.

Gum disease is a serious problem, but having mouth jewelry makes you even more susceptible. If the stud, barbell, or ring comes in contact with your gums, it could put you at risk for gum recession. Once that starts, Rodeo Dental explains that it is hard to contain. The roots of your teeth will also become exposed when your gums start to recede, which could lead to tooth decay.

Tongue piercing can make chewing and speaking difficult. All oral piercings can produce an excessive amount of saliva causing you to drool. Your taste buds may also be altered if you have oral piercings.

Jewelry aspiration is quite serious and could cause you to swallow part of the stud, barbell, or ring. If this happens, you could be on your way to the hospital with a lung or digestive track injury.

One of the biggest risks that can occur with oral piercing is a condition known as Endocarditis. If the wound from the piercing becomes infected, bacteria could enter your bloodstream. People who have undiagnosed heart problems could develop Endocarditis or an inflammation of the heart valves or the heart itself.

Think before you pierce, and schedule an appointment with Rodeo Dental who may be able to talk you out of tongue, lip, cheek, or uvula piercing.