You might think lip piercings are cool, but your gums don’t agree.
Here’s the thing: having a lip piercing can make your gums shrink back from your teeth. Gum recession can lead to gum disease, which can cause otherwise healthy teeth to fall out. And let’s face it: having missing teeth is not a cool look.
According to a 2005 US study, young adults with a lip piercing are much more likely to have gum recession and young adults without lip piercings. Moreover, the depth of gum recession in young adults with a lip piercing is double the recession in young adults without lip piercings. The study was done by Dr Dimitris Tatakis and presented at a conference of the International & American Association for Dental Research.
Dr. Jimmy Steele, a professor at a British dental school, agreed with the findings. “It will only be one or two teeth affected,” he said. “But they are front teeth, so not ones you want to lose.” He added that taking the stud or ring out at night and making sure the teeth are clean can help reduce the risk of complications.
A similar study on tongue piercings was published in 2003 in the UK. The British study found that tongue piercings can cause life-threatening infections and reactions.
Source: “Lip piercings ‘can shrink gums'”. bbc.co.uk. March 29, 2005.