Let's talk about permanent gold teeth. Maybe you just realized that your natural teeth need implants, or you've broken a tooth in an unfortunate accident. Or maybe you just want that awesome look that rappers like Lil' Wayne sport of legitimate implanted gold teeth for your grill. Whatever your reason for exploring the option of gold teeth, there are many things to consider. So let's get into the nitty-gritty of permanent gold teeth!
Table of contents
- 1 Why gold?
- 2 Types of gold teeth
- 3 Permanent gold teeth procedure
- 4 Permanent gold teeth cost
- 5 Risks
- 6 DIY permanent gold teeth
- 7 Removing permanent gold teeth
- 8 Conclusion
- 9 FAQs
Why would someone want gold teeth? Gold is known for its malleability, so is it even up to the task of grinding the food you consume? Well, we've been using gold in dentistry since the 19th century! Gold is a great material for dentistry because it is biocompatible. This means that your body won't reject the metal from your body like it would any other foreign object. And since gold is also extremely malleable while still mimicking the hardness of natural teeth, it's the ideal candidate for a dental filling because it won't damage the surrounding teeth. Gold is also nearly impossible to corrode.
Nowadays, gold teeth are more of a status symbol than a restorative procedure. Gold is still used to fill cavities, but it isn't as common as silver amalgam or composite. It's way more likely that you will see gold teeth implanted on the jawbone of a rapper than stuck into the hole left by a cavity.
Types of gold teeth
Are there different types of gold teeth? Yes! There are several different ways to introduce this precious metal into your mouth. Permanent gold teeth can fully replace your normal teeth or dress up your smile with some gold caps.
- Gold grills: You probably know about grills for cars, but what are grills for teeth? Also known as ‘grillz' or ‘fronts', these are decorative covers that snap over one or more teeth. These can be encrusted with jewels and precious metals and are generally removable.
- Gold tooth crown: Also known as tooth caps, some people will have their teeth fitted with gold crowns for a permanent golden fix. These are custom-fitted coverings to replace the natural crown of your tooth, but by using gold instead of another material.
- Gold tooth filling: Although this option isn't very common nowadays, a gold filling is still an option in modern dentistry. Most fillings are in places that aren't visible when you smile normally so the point of this is less aesthetic and more a personal preference. Almost like a dental form of the Japanese art of kintsugi—repairing what's broken with gold.
- Gold tooth implant: Yes, you can have gold implanted into your jawbone. No, these teeth are not 100% gold since it is too soft to be used to completely forge a new tooth. Gold teeth implants are usually 20-70% gold alloy, the only golden part is actually the crown. The metals usually mixed with gold for the alloy implant are copper, platinum, zinc, or silver. An implant will replace the root of your tooth with a metal screw and a socket is put into the jawbone to hold it in place. This is the look that popular musical artists, Lil' Wayne, Kanye West, and Kodak Black supposedly sport.
Permanent gold teeth procedure
Depending on what aforementioned option you choose to transform your smile to gold, the procedure varies a lot in time, pain, and price.
Gold teeth grillz
Technically, implants and removable gold teeth clips are both referred to as grillz (grills). But, by far, the most cost-effective and least invasive in terms of the procedure is a removable gold grill. It requires no surgery and very little fitting and most sets can be bought pre-made. The price goes up significantly more if you want custom-made grills with diamonds or other bling. You can order a set of fake gold grills online for next to nothing or you can spend $10,000 on an insane jewel-encrusted 24-carat set. Basically, a removable grill is a teeth-shaped flat piece of metal that bends underneath your front teeth and has a silicon insert to press up against the natural teeth while it's in your mouth. This video demonstrates how to fit an “off the shelf” grill to your teeth:
Gold tooth crowns
A capped tooth set is also considered to be a grill. As previously mentioned, some people may opt to have their grill more permanent than a removable shield by capping their front teeth with gold crowns. A gold-capped tooth requires a more invasive procedure:
- First, the dentist will shave away at the natural tooth crowns to make room for the new gold crowns to fit over the old tooth like a glove. You will leave the first appointment with a temporary crown, that likely will not be as comfortable as your final piece.
- Next, the dentist will need to make an impression of the remaining tooth, these impressions are what will be used to make the new gold crowns.
- For the next appointment, your dentist will remove the temporary crowns and use dental cement to attach the new gold crowns.
Gold teeth crowns are also designed with jewels and other precious metals. Many people choose to include diamonds and other gemstones on the front-facing side of their crowns. Gold caps usually cost anywhere from $800 to $2,500 per tooth; depending on how expensive the materials are and where you have them done.
Pretty much anyone who has ever been to the dentist before regular sealant treatment became common knows what a dental filling entails. These are not typically an aesthetic choice. Mostly, it is used to replace decayed parts of the natural tooth by first drilling out the dead parts and then putting gold into the remaining space. A gold filling was much more common in the past but now is almost obsolete as composite renders the filling virtually invisible and silver amalgam is more cost-effective and durable. A silver amalgam filling can cost anywhere from $50 to $150. A gold filling can cost up to ten times that price!
Gold teeth implants
You can have an implanted grill as well. This is the most hardcore option for permanent gold teeth. It requires surgery and is very costly. There are two types of implants. The most common type of implant is known as an endosteal implant, which is surgically placed into the jawbone. The other, less common type is a subperiosteal implant, which involves a frame fitted onto the jawbone just below the gums.
Gold implants are not made of pure gold. This permanent option is usually made from a gold alloy. A gold alloy is made by mixing gold with another substance, like copper, platinum, or silver in order to harden the material.
The procedure for implanting permanent gold teeth is extensive and painful (although there are anesthetic options and prescribed painkillers that make the process more comfortable) and involves many steps.
- First, the natural teeth and roots that will be replaced with gold teeth need to be removed entirely. This is a surgery that requires a lot of healing time and local anesthetic as it is quite painful to remove the natural teeth.
- After the natural teeth have been removed, the doctor will need to make an incision in the gums to expose the bone and then drill into the jawbone to set the implants. Sometimes this can be done on the same day as tooth removal, especially if there is no decay.
- Once the holes for the implants have been drilled, the abutments can be set. Think of this as the peg to which the tooth will be attached. Your doctor will likely give you temporary crowns to wear while the surgical site heals.
- After the abutments have been set and healed, about two weeks, the doctor can then place the permanent gold teeth crown on the abutment and screw it in or cement it with dental cement.
When it comes to gold teeth, implants are definitely the most permanent option. Implants can be removed but it is a difficult and expensive process when compared to a removable grill, plus if they're removed, you'll have to get different crowns to replace them. People who are not 100% certain that they will want permanent gold teeth forever may choose to have a removable grill or have their natural teeth capped with gold instead.
Permanent gold teeth cost
Time for the real question, how much is a gold tooth? Obviously, permanent gold teeth prices are more than some other materials given the precious nature of the element. You can find cheap options anywhere, but the risks are amplified if you use those. So for safety's sake, let's only compare the options available from your local accredited dentist.
Permanent gold teeth can be adorned with jewels and pretty much anything gold jewelry could have attached to it. Clearly, having a diamond-encrusted tooth is going to be more costly than a plain gold one, so plan to increase these price estimates to include your personal design preferences.
Recently, prominent Florida rapper, Kodak Black, removed his permanent gold teeth only to discover he had gum disease. So, it's clear that there are some risks when it comes to dressing your teeth gold. Grills can lead to the wearing down of natural tooth enamel, decay, and gum disease. And crowns can lead to tooth decay on the natural tooth if your gums begin to recede.
All grills come with risks however, except implanted gold teeth, which would carry the same risks as normal implants, and are the preferred way to replace missing teeth. By limiting the amount of time spent wearing a removable gold grill you can reduce the chances of tooth decay and gum disease.
When you do wear a grill, food and other debris can get stuck between the teeth and the grill letting bacteria congregate and produce acids. These acids can lead to the aforementioned problems. It is also worth noting that the likelihood of developing bad breath is much higher due to bacteria and food debris trapped between teeth and gums. But, with proper care, many people can avoid health complications from their new teeth.
How to care for permanent gold teeth
Caring for gold teeth is only minimally more complex than caring for natural teeth. The most important thing to remember is to keep the spaces between the gold face and your natural teeth clean and free of debris. But, caring for gold depends on what type of teeth you have.
The most important thing to remember when wearing your grill is to remove it from your mouth before eating. Food can become trapped between your teeth and the grill and cause acids to build up and quicken decay. Being especially careful about brushing and flossing can minimize the negative impact of wearing a grill. Try to limit the amount of time spent wearing the device and make sure to thoroughly cleanse your teeth and grill before putting it back into your mouth.
Caring for a dental crown is just as easy as caring for your natural teeth. Make sure to brush and floss twice a day and watch what you eat. The only difference with capped teeth is that you will need to watch what you eat. A crown is more likely to be damaged if you eat hard or sticky foods. Try to avoid, nuts, hard candies, crunchy foods, and chewing gum. Because gold doesn't shrink, there is minimal risk of tooth decay around the edges of your crown.
Gold alloy is known to turn black and become dirty over time. So, just like any golden jewelry, they need to be cleaned regularly. Caring for permanent implants is a bit more intense. It is important to use a soft-bristle brush and a non-abrasive toothpaste so as to not damage the tooth. Brushing twice a day and flossing regularly is especially important and making sure that in and around the crown are clean as well. Using a water flosser would also be a good idea to prevent any gum disease from beginning under the crown around the abutment.
DIY permanent gold teeth
Just because you can go to a dentist for your grill doesn't mean that everyone will. DIY options should be avoided as they are always dangerous and can cause a great deal of damage. Some people will try to attach removable grills with glue to permanently affix them to the natural teeth. This can lead to decay, damage, and discoloration of the natural teeth and is extremely inadvisable. If you have a grill you should make sure that it can be easily removed so that you can properly care for your natural teeth.
Removing permanent gold teeth
Removable options are more versatile since you can just take them out whenever you want normal teeth. Permanent gold teeth are trickier. Removing your permanent bling will require the expertise of your dentist. In order to not damage the abutment and remove the gold crown, the adhesive will need to be dissolved and the cap will need to be replaced with another permanent option. Leaving the abutment exposed is dangerous and nobody should try to remove a gold crown by themselves.
Since the 1980s, gold teeth have become increasingly popular in the music world. Grills are typically removable and come with significant health risks but cost a lot less than implants. Implanted gold teeth are a more permanent option and are sported by celebrities Lil' Wayne, Kanye West, and Kodak Black. This option can have a value anywhere from a few thousand to a few million dollars depending on the style. Removing a set of permanent teeth isn't impossible, but it definitely isn't the easiest procedure, so consider carefully before going all out on your grill.
How much are gold teeth?
Permanent gold teeth cost ranges from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. A single gold tooth cap can cost a thousand dollars and a whole set of implants can cost $2,700 to $5000.
Do permanent gold teeth rot your teeth?
No, they don't inherently rot your teeth. However, wearing a grill for too long and not maintaining proper hygiene will lead to faster tooth decay. Sometimes, gums will recede around the site of a crown and cause decay at the base of the natural tooth.
Can you get gold teeth removed?
Yes, crowns and implants can be removed and replaced with composite, porcelain, or other materials; the procedure isn't so invasive but it requires a trip to the dentist.
Does getting gold teeth hurt?
Wearing a grill is, at most, uncomfortable. Having a cap installed over the natural tooth is minimally painful and requires very little dentist time. Getting an implant in your jawbone is very painful and requires a lot of dentist time. Anesthetic and painkillers are used during the process to make it more comfortable.