If getting a tattoo on your arm or back isn’t unique and original enough for you, perhaps it’s time to get a tooth tattoo.
Referred to as “tatteeth,” the procedure is quick, painless, and apparently entirely safe and harmless, too. You can get anything from a simple star or heart, to a more detailed image of your pug, inked onto your crown. Steven Landman, a dentist at Ellington Dental Associates in Connecticut, has been performing the procedure for the past decade —though he says it has just taken off recently as a trend.
In order to get a tattooth, a customer would have to be in need of a dental crown. The process involves a dentist taking an impression of your tooth where the crown will be fitted. The mold is then sent to a dental lab where it will receive the tattoo design, which can cost from $75 to $200. The crown is then fired in an oven at 212 degrees. A tattooth will last for years — similar to traditional porcelain crowns — and doesn’t damage your teeth.
Customers have gotten images of their cats, Homer Simpson, the Oakland Raider's logo, and even copies of drawings their children made tattooed onto their teeth. There are both permanent and temporary ones — the long-lasting ones are completed on a crown, while short-term ones are simply applied to the surface of the tooth. Even the permanent ones can be removed with a few visits to the dentists. In some rare cases, however, dental tattoos can potentially lead to cavities, if the ink wasn't done correctly in the first place.
“I thought about tattoos in the past but let’s face it, everyone has a tattoo and it’s no longer cool or unique,” Tim Miller, one of Landman’s tatteeth customers who got a tattoo of a shamrock to honor his wife’s Irish background, told WFSB. “So that’s why I went ahead and got the tooth,” despite the fact that most people mistake the shamrock for a piece of spinach stuck in his teeth.