How To Clean Tongue Piercing Jewelry

  • Written By Dan Hunter on November 11, 2020
    Last Updated: March 17, 2022

Did you know that your mouth is home to thousands of microorganisms, which is a nice way of saying bacteria? 

If you wear a tongue piercing, ring, or other jewelry, it is essential that you are regularly cleaning it to ensure that you do not get an infection. This guide will identify what cleaning habits you should develop if you wear tongue jewelry, how to disinfect your tongue piercing and other oral hygiene recommendations.

How To Disinfect Tongue Piercing Jewelry

There are a few common techniques to sterilize your tongue ring and jewelry. They all work well, but you may prefer one option over another because of the tongue jewelry’s material, whether it be plastic or metal. 

The most common method is boiling water. Bring a small saucepan of water to boil and let your tongue jewelry sit in the boiling water for two to three minutes. During this time, you could rinse with a mouthwash, brush your tongue, or practice other oral health hygiene.

Alternatively, you can soak your tongue jewelry in rubbing alcohol for 10 to 15 minutes. After soaking the jewelry, carefully rinse it thoroughly with clean water, such as bottled water. 

Another option is to soak your tongue jewelry in hydrogen peroxide for a few minutes. Similarly to the previous method, rinse the jewelry thoroughly with clean water. 

Since mouthwash is good enough for your mouth, you can also use it to soak your tongue jewelry. Let it soak for a few minutes, and once again, rinse it with clean water afterward.

In addition, you can wash your tongue jewelry with soapy water, as long as you use antibacterial soap. If there is any buildup on your barbell, for instance, use a soft brush to clean it away. Always thoroughly rinse your jewelry if you use this method.

Allow the tongue ring, barbell, or other jewelry to dry before putting it back in completely.

There are a lot of different ways you can sterilize your tongue jewelry. The key is to do it regularly. 

Why It’s Important To Clean Your Jewelry

The tongue ring offers an extra place for food to be captured and plaque to build-up. If you are not careful about how you care for your tongue jewelry, you could also be introducing new bacteria into your mouth when you reinsert it. 

If you do not regularly clean your tongue ring and the piercing, you could easily get an infection. 

Symptoms to look for include:

  • Swelling and inflammation of the tongue
  • Excessive bleeding from your tongue hole
  • Any pus or yellow discharge from the piercing hole
  • Fever
  • Severe pain

Should you get an infection, immediately call your doctor for help.

Regular Cleaning Habits

Remember, if you’ve just got your tongue pierced, it may take three to four weeks to heal fully. It is also recommended that you leave your tongue jewelry in place for eight weeks to ensure the hole will not disappear. 

You may experience swelling, especially the few days after getting your piercing. Use ice cubes to manage the inflammation.

You should also use either an alcohol-free mouthwash or warm salt water a few times a day, especially after eating. This will ensure good oral hygiene after your piercing, and reduce the chance of an infection. Remember to always wash your hands before you touch your piercing.

If you’d like a suggestion, Dental Herb Company Tooth & Gums Tonic is the best mouthwash you can buy to help clear infections within the oral cavity.

Once you can take your initial barbell out and swap it for your tongue jewelry of choice, keep these cleaning habits in mind:

  • At least every six to eight weeks, take your piercing out to clean it.
  • When you buy new jewelry, clean it before inserting it into your tongue.
  • Occasionally take out the piercing when brushing your tongue to keep it healthy and clean.
  • Always wash your hands before touching your tongue piercing.

To Summarize

It’s not difficult or challenging to clean your jewelry. You can use many household items from mouthwash to boiling water to create your own routine. Set a recurring calendar appointment to remind you to clean your tongue jewelry every six to eight weeks, and you’ll create good cleaning habits and prevent future problems.

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