“When we’re piercing vertically, especially in the centre, we’re piercing through a connective tissue between those muscles,” Loheide explains. “But when you’re piercing horizontally, you’re actually pinning those muscles together, and that can cause a lot of damage.” In the state of Oregon, America, they’ve even banned horizontal tongue piercings.
Can anyone get a tongue piercing?
Though everyone’s tongue is different, Loheide says if your tongue is too short or you have a tongue-tie — which is basically when the webbing underneath your tongue comes almost or all the way to the tip — a tongue piercing is probably not the best option for you.
When you arrive at your appointment, don’t be surprised if the piercer starts analysing your mouth. In fact, that’s a good sign because your unique anatomy will dictate where you can and can’t get pierced, and any reputable piercer will ensure to take that into account, Loheide shares.
“We want to see where the blood flow is along the underside of the tongue and make sure that we’re not too close to it,” they explain. “But we also want to look at the shape of someone’s teeth and someone’s mouth when we’re deciding placement.” That way, a piercer can ensure that they aren’t causing unnecessary damage and that the jewellery won’t rub up uncomfortably against your teeth.
What can I expect during a tongue piercing appointment?
Before your appointment, it’s imperative that you brush your teeth and tongue before arriving. Myers shares that typically her clients are given mouthwash right before to help clean their mouths out.
As mentioned above, most of your appointment will be spent on prepping and checking your tongue before the needle is inserted. The actual piercing part of the session is short, just like most other piercings — a hollow needle is pushed through the tongue, and then the piercer adds the jewellery, which is a barbell shape.
“Paired tongue piercings, aka venoms, are a lot more anatomy-dependent because those are placed closer to the major veins in your tongue so we have to make sure that there’s space around that blood flow for them to be placed safely,” says Myers.
What are the rules after getting your tongue pierced?
There are a few things to expect immediately after your piercing. If you’ve been pierced before, some of these won’t be too shocking, but there are certain effects that are specific to tongue piercings.