My Centre Tongue Piercing Experience & Tips
I would just like to say that when it comes to any kind of body modification the healing process and amount of discomfort can differ from person to person and my experience of tongue piercing may be significantly different to yours. When thinking about a new piercing you should consider all of the consequences, do not just base your decision on a few experiences. Read around as much as you can before you make your final decision.
Some background info I am a 16 year old female and have always loved the look of tongue piercings since first seeing one at the age of 7 on Scary Spice from the Spice Girls! My family were always against it because of the risks involved with oral piercings, infection, swelling, etc.
My 16th birthday came and the months went by. This resulted in me getting my tragus pierced instead because I have always had doubts about a tongue piercing at the back of my mind. Finally after months of thinking about it, years of wanting it and reading probably over 100 experiences on BME, I just decided I'd go for it.
Getting my tongue done was my first actual 'body' piercing so it was a big thing to me. Previous to this I had only had an industrial done which healed beautifully, my tragus and my ear lobes which were pierced with a gun when I was little [never get pierced with a gun it causes more trauma to the area then a needle.] I had also played around with stretching my lobes over the years but took them out in the end.
I chose to get pierced at Bodyworks in Croydon because I had been there before to get my other piercings. The staff are very friendly and professional and my other piercings healed really well with minimal pain.
So finally that day, I drove there to get it done with butterflies in my stomach! I entered the studio and for some reason I immediately felt relaxed. I Signed what I needed to, paying £35 and my piercer told me about tongue piercing aftercare.
Before I knew it, I was sitting in the very comfy piercing chair with my head tilted back. The women who pierced me told me she has been piercing for around 8 years, which was nice to know. She then asked me to poke out my tongue, as she took a look at the veins and length of my tongue to check it was suitable to be pierced. Thank God it was!
She did not dry off my tongue or ask me to use mouthwash like I have read countless times in other people's experiences. I had no idea why and did not even think about that until after. She told me to stick out my tongue as far as I could and then she clamped me. The clamp itself did not hurt. It was when she used the clamp to pull out my tongue as far as she could that was not so nice as it felt like my tongue web was being stretched to the extreme. So there I was looking up at the ceiling thinking she was still checking if the clamp was in position when I felt this weird feeling on the top of my tongue. It was like a tiny pinch and I could feel the needle moving through my tongue but it did not hurt at all. She then said to me 'I'm screwing on the bottom ball now, all done!' I was amazed. It was over so fast.
I was not asked to wash my mouth out with mouthwash either and my tongue did not even bleed one drop of blood, I think that could be why. Besides I had already bought some Dentyl mouthwash from their studio which I was going to use as soon as I got home. I thanked her and left, walking out of the studio in a sort of trance. I could not believe I had just done that and on top of it all, I barely felt it happen! The bar felt fine in my mouth and it did not hurt as such, it was more of a dull ache. Talking was a little weird and swallowing was uncomfortable because the bar kept rubbing on the bottom and roof of my mouth. After just 20 minutes my tongue had completely swollen to the full length of the bar. Overall though, I was very happy with how smoothly it went.
Day 1 I took two Ibuprofen when I got home to help with swelling. These proved hard and painful to swallow. I found that tilting my head back and dropping the tablet past the piercing and then swallowing it with water was easiest. Later I ate some lukewarm soup, sucking it through a straw so that I could avoid moving my tongue as much as possible.
Dinner was very difficult to eat and I had potatoes and sausages mashed up, it took me about 40 minutes to eat 1/3 of my food. I attempted to chew and bit down on the bar several times no matter how much I tried to keep my tongue out of the way it just was not working. In the end I had to just use a spoon and drop the mashed up food down my throat, not chewing at all. I drank ice water throughout the day and used mouthwash after my meals like the previous day. I then went to bed with a sore tongue. It was hard to sleep as the bar causes extra saliva in the mouth and I had to keep swallowing all the time feeling like I was going to dribble everywhere! I slept propped up with pillows as it helps with the swelling because less blood goes to your head compared to when you are laying flat. I woke up every few hours the first night because my tongue was not used to having metal in it but there was no pain, it just felt a little tingly and strange.
Day 2 I woke up and ate rice pudding mixed with milk to make it less stodgy. It was much easier than yesterday and my tongue was not sore at all. I ate normally with a spoon, being careful not to get it caught under the top ball of my piercing. It took longer than usual to eat but I managed it. I had more soup for lunch, 'drinking' it through a straw simply because it was much easier as I could put the straw back past my piercing and to the side of it. I managed to drink a warm cup of tea and I found that helped a lot, I added lots of sugar to try to keep my energy up as eating so little was causing me to feel shaky and tired. My tongue is still as swollen as it was yesterday but there is no pain unless I move my tongue in a certain way. I also noticed that the piercing had been slanted slightly to the side of my tongue web which I know is done to avoid irritation to the underneath of the tongue.
The days after that were pretty much the same, the soreness slowly diminished after about day 4 and I began to be able to chew things properly. I generally ate the same sorts of food each day until the bar was changed as I still could not help but bite down on it. I got the bar changed a week later and it is much more comfortable to eat and I cannot even feel it in my mouth anymore. My slight lisp has gone now the bars shorter. Talking is the same as it was before the piercing.
Below are some things I found helped the healing process so I thought I might put them here for anyone who is interested in planning ahead. Some of you will probably know this but it is just here for the people that do not.
~ Tips ~
The day before, buy some easy to eat food such as soup, rice pudding, mashed potato and even baby food is an option.
Buy a new soft toothbrush so you can brush your tongue and teeth and as it is new there is less bacteria being put into your mouth.
Fill some bottles up with water and put them into the freezer so you will have iced water to drink or make some ice cubes to suck on. Drink/eat these all week until the swelling goes down.
Eat about an hour before you get the piercing done. I would advise eating something very filling as the first dew days eating are the hardest and you may find yourself struggling to eat like I did and being really hungry, although not everyone has that problem. I also ate a chocolate bar and a had a can of coke to raise my blood sugar levels up, this helps to stop you feeling faint after the piercing.
Take some anti-inflammatory medicine before the piercing such as Ibuprofen or Nurofen to help with the swelling and pain. Continue to take the medicine once you get the piercing until the swelling is not so bad.
Avoid any spicy, very hot, chewy or sharp foods so that eating is less likely to be painful.
Use your mouthwash every time you eat. Try to eat your meals close together so you do not use too much mouthwash resulting in oral thrush and the killing of the good bacteria in your mouth. I used mine 3 times a day after breakfast, lunch and dinner, brushing my teeth beforehand. A white coating on the tongue is usually a sign of too much mouthwash if this happens cut down.
Sleep propped up and try to get a good nights sleep and eat as well as you can to help with the healing.
Avoid touching the piercing, putting your fingers into your mouth or playing with the bar.
If your tongue becomes infected, do not hesitate to get it checked out as infections in the mouth can be serious if left untreated or unnoticed.
Change it/get it changed when the swelling has gone down. If you do it before that you risk your tongue swelling up again with the shorter bar which could cause it to become embedded in your tongue. [Can't imagine that to be too nice!]
I can't really think of much else to put but everyone is different and you will find out throughout the week what works for you and what doesn't.
I hope if you are considering a tongue piercing my experience has been helpful to you. Just weigh up the options, know the risks and if it still seems like the piercing for you, go ahead and get it done! With some care and patience you should have a beautifully healed tongue piercing in quite a short amount of time!
Good luck and do what makes you happy. :)
submitted by: Anonymous
on: 23 Sept. 2008
in Tongue Piercing