In many cultures throughout history, gold teeth have been a symbol of wealth, power or status. Until the 1980s, gold foil restorations were popular as dental caps or crowns, but they fell out of favor. Now most gold teeth are temporary caps or "grills."
Gold teeth were used as early as in ancient Egypt. Gold's malleable constitution makes it an easy metal to work with for dental restorations, though other precious metals have also been used. In today's culture, gold teeth represent "bling," or status in terms of wealth and fame, and have become part of the hip hop and rap cultures among artists and fans.