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2021 Tongue Piercing Pros & Cons by a Piercer S02 EP21

In Season 2 Episode 21, DaVo, a Professional Piercer since 1994, covers the Pros and Cons of Tongue Piercings. In season 2 he also covers: What You Should Know Before Getting the Piercing, The Piercing Experience, Healing, Jewelry, Living with the Piercing, and Abandoning the Piercing.

I aka DaVo have been a professional body piercer and is the owner of the Axiom Body Piercing Studio in Des Moines, Iowa since 1994. My focus on education and helping clients make safe and informed decisions on getting pierced has always been a large part of my business practices and services. With my website and increasingly on youtube, I hope to expand and inform others outside of my small part of the world. I always encourage questions and comments, so if you have one, please comment. 

Show Notes:

S 02 EP 21 Tongue Piercing

  • Pierced vertically between the muscles of the tongue just in front of the tendon


  • Aztec and Mayan cultures both have illustrations of Priest piercing their tongues and then running cords through them. This was not a permanent piercing though.

  • Asian Spirit Mediums practiced tongue piercing as an offering and proof of being in a trance state.

  • Often the piercing of the tongue was done by Blockhead or geek performers in sideshows.

  • Modern permanent piercing we know today was developed during the 1980s at Gauntlet. It first appeared in PFIQ #18 in 1983.


  1. Fast healing

  2. Established

  3. Makes things interesting

  4. Can be hidden

  5. Doesn’t affect lifestyle as much


  1. Risk to Damage to teeth, gums, and bones

  2. effects eating and speech

  3. Closes Quickly

  4. Swelling, change of diet

  5. Ends Unscrewing

Things to look for:

  • Piercer is experienced in this piercing, professional, informative and makes you feel comfortable, and offers a consultation that involves aftercare, risks, etc… The piercer should evaluate your anatomy

  • If the tendon on the underside of the tongue connects too far forward the piercing shouldn’t be done. This is not a vain.

  • More acceptable to STDs during oral sex even after the piercing is healed.

  • The risk of damaging teeth, gums, and bones

  • Should discuss diet changes

  • Does the piercer provide aftercare products and written and verbal aftercare instruction?

  • Have a good meal beforehand

The Piercing Experience:

  • Consultation & Jewelry Selection

  • Waiver, Set Up, and Disinfection

  • Marking should be centered on the top and bottom. The placement should be slightly in front of the tendon and a 90-degree angle to the tongue.

  • Best done with forceps

  • Usually, the piercing is done sitting up with the needle passing downward. Normally with the jewelry attached to the needle with a guide pin.

  • The jewelry end is put on,

  • There may be some slight to moderate bleeding.

  • Usually, you will have throbbing, aching, and warmth in the area for a few minutes afterward

  • Piercing is sensitive to the touch.

  • Some bruising can occur

  • It will feel strange to have it in your mouth, also it is not uncommon to have tightness in the jaw and neck.


  • The average healing time is 2-4 weeks or longer

  • Rinse twice daily with a non-alcohol based antiseptic mouthwash & warm saltwater

  • Must practice cross-contamination prevention and isolate and avoid any contact with the piercing.

    • Clean hands

    • no oral contact

    • do not share food items

    • Make sure utensils are clean

    • No Swimming

    • Keep Pets Away

  • Avoid playing with the piercing or excessive movement

  • Swelling

    • Swelling will often happen the next morning after the piercing.

    • Cold items are your friend.

    • Change diet and reduce talking and movement

    • Reduce swelling including sleeping with your head elevated.

  • First 3-5 days you can experience slight bleeding off and on, redness/discolor, heat, and tenderness to the touch.

  • An oral piercing white ring of tissue, discharge, and nesting

  • Numbness may happen as a result of the swelling

  • Downsize in 7-10 days


  • should leave jewelry in at all times

  • The jewelry should be downsized 7-10 days after piercing

  • check the tightness of the end.

  • Do not wear plastic ends, avoid sharp ends or shaped ends.

Living with the piercing:

  • The jewelry should be left in at all times.

  • Monitor teeth, gums, and bones in the piercing area. If there is a soreness, pain, or damage, remove the jewelry and abandon the piercing.

  • check the tightness of the ball regularly

  • Plaque can collect the jewelry, rinsing with anti-plaque mouthwash, or brushing will reduce this.

Abandoning the piercing:

  • Will close but may appear open for a long period of time.

  • There will be a small indented circular scar on each side. This may fade in time.

Check Out Our Merch Store -

The following links are affiliate links and a small amount will go to DaVo and the Axiom:

Suggested Aftercare Products:

  • For Premixed Saline DaVo suggests. NeilMed Neil Cleanse Wound Wash First-Aid Sterile Saline Solution 6 fl oz Each -
  • For Oral Piercings -     
    Biotene Fresh Mint Moisturizing Oral Rinse Mouthwash, Alcohol-Free, for Dry Mouth -

All footage was filmed using a Canon EOS 80D Camera with the Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM Lens - and Canon EOS R  - with Canon EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM Lens -

Audio - Recorded with Shure MV7 - with a Tascam DR-40x -

For more information on DaVo and the Axiom Body Piercing Studio go to

Now on TikTok - TikTok - @SKTattoo -

Axiom Instagram -

Skin Kitchen's Instagram -

Contact DaVo at or by phone at 515-966-4814
If you would like to set up a Piercing Appointment go to

Skin Kitchen Tattoo and The Axiom Body Piercing Studio are located at 3800 Douglas Ave./Des Moines, Iowa 50311
Tattoo hours are Thursday - Monday 1-8pm
Piercing hours are Thursday - Monday 2-8pm