Rosalía does it again: let's talk about dental jewellery

The Catalan artist Rosalía is an expert in two things: obviously in music, but also in generating controversy (although the latter is often unintentional, and more circumscribed to the media spotlight). From Vélez and Lozano We have already used this focus to educate and disseminate quality information and recommendations on oral health issues (which is, after all, our job) before: we talked about our article about the grillzswho experienced a moment of great popularity two autumns ago thanks to the appearance of the Catalan with them.

On this occasion, the singer and her butterfly on her incisors have brought the subject of dental accessories and jewellery back into the limelight, so we're going to take the opportunity to illustrate a little about the different types that exist, refreshing along the way what we already covered about the most popular ones: the grillzs.

Types of dental jewellery and accessories

Oral piercings

Although it is no longer so common, not so long ago, when piercings of all kinds experienced a powerful surge in popularity, it was quite common to see people who had pierced their gums or labial frenulum to place ornaments of all kinds.

In addition, although their popularity has also fallen, piercings in areas such as tongue or lips could also be included in the consideration of 'dental accessory' because, after all, they are located in the oral area.

Dental jewellery

Although by 'dental jewellery' we can actually refer to several of these accessories or adornments, it is the most common way of calling adornments such as the one that has led us to write this article: the butterfly that Rosalía is wearing on her incisors. These types of decorations work in much the same way as braces: the tooth is cleaned, polished, a composite resin is applied (very similar to those used, for example, to make a filling) and the decoration is attached.

In fact, Rosalia's is very striking and less common, but I'm sure you all remember the little sparkles that were so fashionable in the 2000s. Its commercial name is 'skyce'.

Dental inlays

We distinguish the latter from the former for one fundamental reason: they are not glued to the tooth, but are actually embedded. However, not on a real tooth. This is done on veneers and caps, when a healthy tooth does not have to be damaged in order to place it. It is an eccentricity more typical of celebrities, especially artists of urban genres, and usually quite expensive. For example, Rauw Alejandro, Rosalía's boyfriend, had at least 6 veneers done by Jenny Villalda, a Colombian dentist who treats many celebrities. The approximate price? Around 600 or 700 dollars for each one. Discounting the veneers and the cost of the visit to the clinic, of course.

Grillz

Although it is a fairly old accessory, it was actually confined to a very specific subgroup: American rap artists, who in the 80s and 90s made them quite popular among their fans. After that, its use has been somewhat more marginal, but it has only been in recent years, perhaps five years ago, that it has come back into fashion due to artists more closely linked to the mainstream. From Madonna to Miley Cirus to Kim Kardashian, it has made a strong impression on women, perhaps because it was once an aesthetic accessory more associated with men and intended to convey aggressiveness.

Consequences of the use of these dental accessories

Although many of the consequences are identical for the different types of attachments we have seen, let's look at them one by one from a purely oral health point of view.

Oral piercings

Gum piercings certainly take the cake. As well as damaging the already delicate mucous membranes, which do not regenerate as easily as, for example, an ear piercing, they can cause damage through wear and tear, become detached and make it so difficult to maintain hygiene in the area that it is not surprising that prolonged use can lead to gingivitis. After all, for fear of the piercing breaking or coming loose, it is normal not to brush the area, resulting in poor hygiene.

With regard to tongue and/or lip piercings, the risks include infections (quite unpleasant in the case of the tongue, as you can imagine), lack of hygiene in the case of the tongue or damage to teeth in the case of some areas of the lip that can cause it to rub against our teeth.

Dental jewellery

The risks of this product are minimal, so much so that here in the clinic we have a model available for our patients, who request it from time to time. In the end, the biggest risk that an adhesive like this can have is that it will fall off over time. Even so, in our experience, people tend to get tired of it sooner and come to the clinic to ask us to remove it for them.

Dental inlays

As in the previous case, this type of inlays (or dilatations, as some dentists call them) have no associated risks for our oral health. In the end, the greatest risk is that something has gone wrong during the setting process and the piece falls out and we end up swallowing it. In the case of the diamonds worn by Rauw Alejandro, valued at around 700 dollars a piece, as we have seen, a very expensive meal that we would not even enjoy.

Grillz

There are many nuances here. In principle, the responsible use of high-quality grillz, made of good materials and tailored to your individual case, does not pose any serious risks to your oral health. But let's be clear, what does responsible use mean? We must bear in mind that grillz modify our natural occlusion and do not allow us to have a proper hygiene (for more than obvious reasons), therefore, we should not use them as we would use, for example, a watch. It is not an accessory that wears the same hours as a pendant, but something specific for a special event.

Moreover, the problem is that the price is not suitable for all budgets if it is done as it should be done, that is to say, custom-made and with top quality biocompatible materials. Therefore, some people choose to buy theirs online, with the obvious health risk that this entails. Firstly because we cannot be sure that we are using a material that will not cause allergies or irreversible damage to the enamel and secondly because using a generic size may force us to 'force' it to fit our own teeth, thus causing irreversible movements, damage or fractures.

 

We hope we have enlightened you with this article and that, if you are considering acquiring any type of dental accessory, you do so responsibly and with professional advice. In any case, the aesthetic treatments that we recommend at Vélez y Lozano are those that we offer our patients, no more and no less, as the rest have risks associated with them to a greater or lesser extent, however responsible their use may be.

If you have any other questions on this or any other matter, you can contact us through the usual channels.