Dental Health
October 4, 2016
Dental tattoos

The concept of decorating or enhancing teeth is actually quite ancient. The practice of soft tissue piercings like nose, ear, eyebrows with ornaments, jewelry, and body tattooing is age old and started in Egypt, China and medieval times around 5,000 years back. They were considered as a sign of religious and social rank in the community, but now it is regaining momentum as a fashion and style statement by many young people.{{more}}

Dental tattoos are not new; the trend started in the West about 8-10 years ago when hip hop singers and rappers started sporting them in their music videos and then youngsters started copying them. In both China and Japan, women at one point stained their teeth black, as part of their beauty regimens, and in many cultures, teeth may be bordered in gold or replaced as a status symbol. Modern dentistry gave rise to the idea of dental tattoos.

What exactly are dental tattoos?

Dental tattoos are custom designs, which are added to dental crowns before the crowns are sealed and set in the mouth. This term is also used for temporary decals and stains used to decorate the teeth. Dental tattoos can potentially be applied to any tooth, and they run a wide gamut of styles, colours and designs.

Different types of dental tattoos

Temporary tattoos are designs in the form of templates that are stuck on the teeth. Sticking a temporary tattoo takes just 15-20 minutes.

Permanent tattoos are drilled on the teeth. Once done, you cannot get them removed. Inscribing permanent tattoos can take long, perhaps hours, depending on the design chosen by the customer.

How do dental tattoos differ from skin tattoos?

Use of word tattoo to define ornamental designs on teeth is a bit of a misnomer, as a tattoo is, by definition, a pigment mark made by piercing the skin. In the case of dental tattoos, the teeth are not actually pierced or even touched with a needle, and the material, which covers teeth, is enamel, not skin. However, the end effect is much the same, especially in the case of an artfully produced dental tattoo.

Procedure to make dental tattoos

Dental tattoos are usually applied by the dental lab, which makes the crowns. After a dentist takes a mould and confirms that it is correctly sized for the tooth, he or she sends it to a lab to be manufactured into a crown, or produces the crowns in-house, depending on personal preference.

If the customer wants a dental tattoo, the mould may be sent to a lab which specializes in such things, and a skilled artist typically does the tattoo work, carefully painting a miniature design onto the tooth before it is sealed.

Because once the work is sealed in, clients generally do not have to take any special steps to maintain their dental tattoos, beyond caring for the crown itself.

Dr Keith John

Email: [email protected]

Clinic: Heritage Dental

Tel: 784-456-2220

Cell: 784-526-0752