May 27, 2009

Teeth Jewels

Teeth with jewels and gold might seem like a new thing, but gem-studded teeth were popular among people from all walks of life in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica, purely for decorative purposes.

As far back as 2,500 years ago, dentists could drill teeth using obsidian drill-like devices, which are capable of penetrating bone. They may even have used some kind of herbal anesthetic. Then they attached the gemstones using plant resin adhesive. The ancient drillers knew enough to avoid the pulp inside teeth, and so managed to avoid an infection or broken tooth. Now celebrities are starting to tattoo their teeth.