Health Risks Of Body Piercing

Body piercing is the act of puncturing or cutting a part of the body and inserting jewelry. Piercing of body parts is hardly new. Early records shows that body piercing started back in ancient cultures. Aztecs and Maya pierced their tongues for spiritual reasons. The Egyptians pierced their navels while the Romans pierced their nipples for known reasons. Today, people also pierce their body parts for various reasons. Some people pierce because they feel it is fashionable, while others do so for religious or spiritual reasons, for sexual pleasure, to conform to certain lifestyle or to rebel or display spirit of independence. Both sexes are involved in body piercing. They pierce different parts of the body, such as the ears, lips, tongue, eyebrows, navel, nose, nipples and genitals.

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There are serious health risks associated with body piercing whether it is do-it-yourself or by a professional piercer. Health risks of body piercing is often as result of poor sanitary technique or piercer lacking understanding of the body anatomy and using the wrong jewelry on a body part. These errors can cause problems for the one being pierced.

Some of the health risks associated with piercing are:
*. Body piercing can result to excessive bleeding if the wrong place of the body is pierced.

*. Hitting blood vessels or a nerve can cause permanent damage. When a nerve is damage you may  not feel anything on that part.

*. Piercing can lead to serious infection. This happen when unsterilized equipment is used.  You can contract HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, tuberculosis, tetanus, staphylococcus, abscesses or boil.

*. Piercing can cause irritation. For example navel piercing is subject to irritation because your clothing will constantly be rubbed by the jewelry.

*. You may lose part of your body.  Multiple piercing on the earlobe has caused some to lose the entire curve of the ear due to serious infection on the cartilage.

*. An infection in the nose stud may involve nearby blood vessels and spread to the brain.

*. Body piercing can cause scarring  (keloids) and allergic reactions. This depend on the type of jewelry used.

*. Piercing of the nipple can cause difficulty for a young woman to breastfeed a baby. Clothing may also pull the jewelry and result to tearing, forming scar tissue and can damage some of the milk-producing glands in the breast.

*. Piercing of the mouth area can cause choking, numbness and loss of taste in the tongue, prolonged bleeding, chipped or fractured teeth, increased saliva flow, uncontrolled drooling, gum injury, speech impediment, difficulties in breathing, chewing and swallowing.

*. You may find it difficult to brush the tongue if you pierced the tongue. This can result to accumulation of bacteria in the mouth and can cause halitosis (bad breath).

*. Jewelry in the genital areas can cause injury to you or your marriage mate.

Healing time for different body parts varies. Piercing of the ear usually take about 6-8 weeks to heal. Healing of the nostrils takes 2-4 months. Some parts may take as long as a year such as the navel area. During healing period, ignorance or negligence can result to infection. For example, one may not know if he or she is to avoid antibacterial ointments as they prevent air from flowing to the pierced area, thus trapping bacteria. Some solution causes reaction with the jewelry used. Not knowing which liquid will react with a jewelry can be a very big problem. What ever decision you make concerning your body, remember that your health is involve and do also know that body piercing has other turn off apart from the health risks.


  1. I see no reason why I should pierce my body. It is disgusting to me. Although in some cultures, they have no problem with piercing.

  2. Pierce my body? No way at all! I see a bit of rebelious spirit in it especially for the male folks. It destatable for a woman to pierce her other body parts apart from the ears.


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