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Volume 3 , Issue 2
Summer 2017

Pages 110117

Gingival Trauma: Tooth Brushing and Oral Piercings

Nienke L. Hennequin-Hoenderdos, RDH, PhD/Fridus A. van der Weijden, DDS, PhD/Dagmar E. Slot, RDH, PhD

DOI: 10.11607/ebh.134

Maintaining healthy teeth and soft oral tissues for life is important. Gingival abrasions are reversible localized epithelial trauma of the gingiva. These soft tissue lesions are caused by oral hygiene procedures and are usually not detected during clinical examinations. One approach to assess gingival abrasions is to distinguish them from the normal gingiva by staining the undamaged gingiva with a commercially available plaque disclosing solution. Soft tissues in the oral cavity have the capacity to recover, but repeated trauma of the gingiva may result in gingival abrasions and/or recessions. Manual toothbrushes with end-rounded filaments cause significantly less gingival abrasions. Another factor that can potentially traumatize soft and hard oral tissues is oral jewelry. Oral piercings are not without risks, considering the serious complications for oral and general health reported in the literature. Both lip and tongue piercings are highly associated with the risk of gingival recession, and tongue piercings are associated with tooth injuries. To prevent the risk of complications, patients should be discouraged from wearing oral or perioral jewelry.

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