When your kids turn into teenagers, you never know what kind of fashion trend they may decide is appealing to them. Unfortunately, modern trends often have less to do with odd clothing choices and more to do with body modification, even when it comes to their teeth. Even though your worst fear may be your youngster showing up with a newly pierced body part, you could just as easily find out your daring teen has the bright idea to make permanent changes to their smile. Here are a few dental modification fads that you should learn about so you can effectively discourage these ideas as a parent.
As odd as it may sound and as much as it may seem like a bad idea to you, teenagers are getting into piercing everything these days, including their teeth. During a dental piercing, a small hole is drilled directly through the tooth and the hole holds a small studded piece of jewelry. Another form of dental piercings involves a studded inlay that is situated in an indention created with a drill. Either way, dental piercings are permanent and can lead to further problems with decay down the road. Therefore, make sure you let you kids know that no matter how cool a dental piercing may be, it could eventually lead to a smile that is anything but cool.
Dental tattoos are actually images that have been printed on dental crowns. These crowns have to be permanently bonded to an existing tooth and will not come off easily. So, if a crown is placed over the tooth for the purpose of displaying a favorite image, the tooth beneath will never be the same and will subsequently have to be covered with a new crown later on.
The obsession with vampires and other mythical beings has brought about a new wave of teenagers and fan followers who want their eye teeth filed into fine points to look more like their favorite characters. Not only is this a permanent cosmetic dental procedure, it can leave the teeth brittle and prone to damage. Plus, if your child grows out of the phase and wants their normal smile back, this can usually only be accomplished with crowns or implants, which can be incredibly costly.
If you are lucky, your child's interest in making permanent changes to their smile will just be a passing stage. However, make sure you openly discourage practices that could be damaging to your child's teeth. Talk to a cosmetic dentist like P. Jeffrey Lowe, DMD, PA to find out more about teen dental fads that you should know about as a parent.