Dental work is required throughout the lifespan of any person. Extractions, fillings, and implants are just some of the work that may have been done to a person’s teeth.
When a person dies, the body may contain implants. Fillings and implanted teeth form part of the implants that a person may have had during living years. The family of the decedent or the person himself may have already decided what to do with the implants after death.
Although many types of materials for fillings and implants exist, gold is a highly valuable compound sometimes used in repairing teeth.
Removing gold from the teeth
Whether a person is buried or cremated, they may wish to have the gold removed from the mouth. Dental gold and cremation go hand-in-hand since the gold must be removed from the teeth before the cremation can take place.
In contrast to larger implants, the gold implants cannot always be successfully retrieved from the remains after the cremation. Gold fragments may melt during the process but are also small enough to pass through the machinery. Once processed, there is no certainty that the gold fragments belonged to the deceased and this can result in legal issues. This is the main reason why gold implants must be removed prior to cremation if the family wishes the implants returned.
The family must make the arrangements as a dentist is required to remove the gold. The gold fragments can then be provided to the family separately, placed in the urn with the ashes, or be sold for income.
Financial implications of removing gold teeth
Some people believe that the gold in their teeth is worth a lot of money. It has been suggested that selling the gold removed from teeth can pay for the funeral.
This doesn’t happen. The amount of gold from one cremation is not worth a significant amount.
The dental gold and the cremation process, proportionally, may seem like very little. However, recycling companies know how to successfully extract recoup value out of any gold, metals, or other non-biological materials left over after cremation.
Recycling companies pay the crematoriums for the left-over gold. The proceeds received by the funeral homes from the recycled gold are rarely kept. Most of the time the money is donated to charities.
This has an added benefit of providing some comfort to many families knowing that their relative, even in death, helped others.