Teens And Tooth Tattoos: Is This A Good Idea?

The typical teenager will do a lot of things to try to show off their personality. Whether it is wardrobe changes or hairstyles, there will be a lot of things that are fairly expected and easy to deal with as a parent. However, if your teenager comes home with news that they would love to get a tooth tattoo, you may actually be a little more than concerned. This dental fad is growing in popularity among a lot of teens (and some adults), but many parents are yet to learn what this dental fad is all about. Here are a few things you need to know about tooth tattoos. 

Tooth tattoos are not actually tattoos at all. 

Tooth tattoos are not actually tattoos; they are small stickers placed on a tooth and then sealed with a temporary sealer or placed on an onlay, veneer, or crown that slips over the tooth. There are no tattoo guns involved and these tattoos are a temporary thing as they will have to be reapplied as they wear away. The methods that revolve around getting these "tattoos" on a tooth vary, but the process looks nothing like getting an actual tattoo on the skin. 

Tooth tattoos do not have to be a permanent modification.

Tooth tattoos sound permanent, but they most often are not. The longest-lasting tooth tattoos are placed on custom-made crowns that get slipped over a tooth and glued in place with an approved dental adhesive. However, the graphic images applied to these crowns can also dissolve and wear away over the years. So if you are worried about your teenager running around for the rest of their life with a smiley face on their front tooth, you should know that most tooth tattoos won't last all that long and can be removed fairly simply. 

Tooth tattoos are being offered by some family dental practices. 

Believe it or not, dental tattoos are not something you will have to visit a seedy shop with a lot of neon decor to get. Many family dental clinics and cosmetic dentists are offering teeth tattoos. If your teen has in mind obtaining this modification from anywhere other than a dentist, the answer should be a resounding "no." Places not qualified to do these cosmetic procedures can use questionable materials and procedures that can stain or damage the teeth. If done at a dentist, you can rest assured the treatment will be done properly.