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When getting a tongue piercing, a person must first think about all that would involve. It would involve having a slight speech impediment, learning to eat differently, and not being able to get certain jobs because of the piercing. Once a person has weighed out all the pros and cons of this the next step is picking a clean place to get it professionally done.

Going into a piercing shop can be a good experience, but there are certain things you must look for. You must always make sure the needle that is used comes out of a new package, never let them use a used needle. Next you need to look for a large machine that they use to clean and sterilize their equipment with. It will look like a small oven. Once you see these things and you have picked out what barbell you would like, you are ready
to be pierced!

First what is done is a person must stick out their tongue as far as possible. The person that is piercing the tongue will have these tongs that have a square at the end of them. The piercer will clamp the tongue so you are unable to put it back into your mouth. Next they will mark the spot they want to pierce, usually with a non-toxic black marker.

At this point the piercer should have a pair of plastic gloves on and they will unwrap the needle at this time. The needle is pushed through the tongue with the piercer’s hand. Once all the way through the tongue, they will then slide the barbell inside the tongue. The barbell screws on the bottom. Once the barbell is in place, the needle comes out, and there will be a little blood, but it is mostly an increase in saliva. The clamp will still be on the tongue at this point. They will then screw the bottom ball on gently. Once secured, they will take a pair of piercing pliers to screw it on more tightly. Do not be alarmed, this is just because the tongue will swell and it unscrews very easy. After they bottom ball is screwed
on tightly, they will remove the clamp. And then you are pierced!

In order to reduce risk of infection, the person should rinse their mouth out with Listerine or another antibacterial mouth wash several times a day. The tongue will swell considerably, but taking Tylenol should help reduce discomfort. Drinking cold beverages and sucking gently on small pieces of ice will also numb the tongue. The swelling should go down in 2 or 3 days, but eating will be difficult for the next 2 to 3 weeks. Remember to keep eating, but eat a lot of soft foods. This can be a good experience if it is safe and done properly!