Tongue piercing swelling is normal after you have had your tongue pierced. How much swelling, of course, varies from person to person.
You can however, do a few things to bring down the swelling within the first week or so. The good news is that because of the constant blood flow to the tongue, it is the fastest healing body piercing!
The tongue piercing itself is hardly painful as the needle passes through it easily. To allow for the tongue piercing swelling, your piercer will initially use a longer barbell so that you are not uncomfortable when it swells. Later this is replaced with the right sized barbell of shorter length.
Tongue piercing swelling is usually more when the piercing is done farther away from the tongue tip. If you happen to have a dimple on the front of your tongue, that spot is considered the perfect spot for the piercing.
The swelling starts up soon after your tongue is pierced. It is very rare to develop an infection on a tongue piercing because the mouth has an enzyme called Ptyalin and lingual antimicrobial peptides that destroy bacteria. Just don’t go overdosing on mouthwash, which can make the tongue lose its natural ability to heal. Your piercer will tell you to stick to soft food; cold beverages and ice cream, which can all help the tongue swelling go down! 😉
Till you get your shorter barbell into your piercing, it is a good idea to use the throat lozenges your piercer recommends to prevent infection and relieve swelling. Don’t even think about trying to change your barbell before your tongue heals! Make sure you have cold water and ice in the fridge. Sip this as soon as you wake up in the morning, as the tongue piercing swelling is usually worse at this time.
Now is the time to check out all your favorite ice cream flavors! Sucking on crushed ice also helps. Avoid talking too much, though, as it can aggravate the tongue piercing swelling.
While tongue piercing swelling is expected, you also have to remember that for a few days following the piercing you will not be able to eat your favorite pizza or sink your teeth into that burger. In fact, you won’t be able to eat any solid foods.
But it will all be worth it in a few weeks when your tongue piercing swelling will come down and your tongue heals completely, because you will be able to wear different kinds of tongue jewelry! 🙂