Dental Patients Requesting Bedazzled Teeth

Dental Patients Requesting Bedazzled Teeth

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PHILADELPHIA -

Noses, ears, tummies, and tats, there's art for every body part. Pierce it, ink it, bling it!

Dental art may have started out rather manly, but these days it's all about "girls in grillz." The trend is more evident than ever when the stars come out to play, photographed at award shows and other high profile events.

Bedazzled teeth are fashionable enough for some celebrities; even mothers of two Colleen Jimenez and Natasha Santos are ready to rock it, too.

"It's something new and trendy." Santos said. "It's what's happening now and I said I want to be a part of that."

"It's not about your age. It's about being fun." Colleen remarks. "But in a much smaller, more subtle, way less expensive scale."

Local dentists say they're surprised by the kinds of dental bling requests they're getting.

"We have put gold teeth on dentures actually," Dr. William Greenberg of Mount Holly Family Dentistry said. "To my eye, it looks like you're wearing a denture made by a welder. I'm still surprised that that's popular. I don't do them. I try to talk people out of them," he adds.

Greenberg is not the only dentist against grillz and drilled-in jewelry.

"It's something I have been asked many times and I will never do." Dr. Leonard Tau told us.

He is opposed to any kind of jewelry being placed inside of the mouth. He showed us the gruesome damage done by a grill ripped off of a prisoner. As bad as it was, he says tongue rings can be worse.

"I have seen more damage from tongue rings than anything else," Tau shared.

He says all jewelry whether permanently-attached or removable, can wear away at gums and bone, chipping teeth and leading to decay, disease, infections and extractions for some patients he treated.

"He destroyed the bone around his teeth; he ended up getting an infection," Tau said of a patient who lost 4 teeth.

Greenberg reasons, "If you want something applied to your tooth, bonding is the way to go."

However, it should never be applied on the front teeth. For that, Greenberg uses a bonding agent that he says is pretty much the same as that used for braces brackets.

Natasha is getting a blue star glued onto her tooth to match her tattoo. Colleen is getting a round crystal, approved by her daughter Ariana and son Gabriel.

Before unveiling his handiwork, Greenberg doesn't forget the final step: "We're going to harden the glue so it will stay where it belongs: firmly in place, no rough edges."

When he tells Natasha that she can take a peek, she is floored with it. "I love it!" she says.

Colleen's reaction is the same. Both girls are satisfied.

Greenberg said this kind of art will stay in place for months as long as you're careful not to bite hard or eat sticky foods on the blingy side of your mouth.

The costume jewels can cost $25 to $50 and then, with application, a couple hundred dollars.

When you're tired of it, Greenberg says, let your dentist remove it. Don't try this at home.

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