17

Feb.

Titanium vs Gold as Wedding Bands For Your Finger’s Safety

By Calla Gold

Ring with Ring Saw

Super Hard Metal Wedding Bands Pose a Danger to Your Swollen Finger, If it Needs to Be Removed in a Hurry.

 

In this post this Santa Barbara Jewelry designer will talk about titanium vs gold wedding bands and why titanium is a bad choice. Why be boring I say, so here is a story to illustrate why titanium is a poor wedding band choice for your finger’s safety.

You and Your Titanium Wedding Band in the Woods

Picture this, you’re out in the country having a beautiful day off. You’re walking with the woman you love. Miles away from the nearest small town, clean air with scudding clouds, no sound of airplanes, no electric wires, no cell reception, just good conversation and good exercise.

You’re just finishing your picnic lunch and you get bitten on the left arm by a wasp. Ouch. And soon you’re feeling that swelling feeling and know you need to get back to the car and get some ice. Too late you notice your fingers are swelling and your wedding ring finger is puffy and red in front of your wedding band.

Your Purple Finger

You can’t get off your band. You freak out a bit, but don’t let her know.

Back to the car, you have her driving and your wedding finger is now purple. Finally you have cell reception and you Google maps the nearest emergency room. Dang, it’s really small and there’s hardly anyone there.

The nurse says, “What’s your ring made of honey?”

“Titanium.”

“Oh.”

Your finger is approaching that blueish color. If you were at a larger emergency room they’d have a motorized ring saw that could get your titanium band off in about ten minutes. But that is not where you are. You are in budget-strapped-Podunk-emergency-room-land.

It Takes More Time and Effort by Far To Remove A Titanium vs Gold or Platinum Band

It Takes More Time and Effort by Far To Remove A Titanium Band Than A Gold or Platinum Band

“If you had a gold band or platinum, we just saw it right off. But you’ve got one of those hard metals. I’ll go get Ralph, I’ve got the arthritis and can’t turn that ring saw wheel anymore. Sorry honey.”

Your Life in Hell, Thanks to Your Titanium Wedding Band

Who knows how long it’ll take them to make the first saw cut through your wedding band with their hand twisting ring saw.

And they have to cut it in two places, so it’ll break apart in half. That is not a scenario I’d like to live through as you or as your wife.

According to Mark Mehaffey MD, emergency room doctor of St. Luke’s Episcopal Hospital in Houston Texas, wearing a titanium wedding band “puts your finger at unnecessary risk.”

See the full interview where Dr. Mahaffey explains why super hard metals are a danger to your finger if you don’t have easy access to a fully equipped emergency room.

Spreading Pliers, titanium vs gold

When You Squeeze the Plier’s Handles It Spreads the Ring Apart, If it is Gold or Platinum. Not if it is a Super Hard Metal Band

Doctor Says – Don’t Chose Super Hard Metal Wedding Bands

Short story long, don’t choose super hard metals for your wedding band. Go with gold or platinum which can be sawed off easily with a hand operated ring saw.

Incidentally if you need your gold or platinum ring sawed off, your jeweler can put them back together at the correct size. Super hard metal rings like titanium, tungsten and stainless steel cannot be repaired. Just tossed and replaced.

Titanium vs Gold Wedding Bands and Your Story

I prefer a wedding band that changes with you. And if you end up with some adventurous story of being wasp stung and needing your ring sawed off, wouldn’t it be cool to have had gold or platinum be your band, then when you tell your story you can point to your ring and say, “yes, this is my ring! Still here.”

It’s About Your Wedding Finger

In this post I’m opposing titanium because of the difficulty of removing it in the event of an accident or allergic reaction. I have other reasons I think it’s not a good choice as a wedding band. Please see my other post about titanium and tungsten, Don’t Wear Titanium or Tungsten Wedding Bands.

May 27th 2014

I’m sharing a comment from Jennifer Parks:
We just went through a very similar scenario to the one you posted. My husband and I were camping and he went down a slide, catching his finger on the bolt at the top. As soon as he got to the bottom he was tryign to pull the gold ring off, to no avail. We had to drive a half our to the nearest hospital, it was not really a Podunk one, but somewhere in between ;) Anyway they had two ring cutters and BOTH blades were dull. 1/2 hour after we got to the hospital the ring was still stuck on his finger. Finally there was a paramedic in the ER that got a new cutter of his unit and they got it off. 9 stitches later, we are good and on the road to a complete recovery, but I can’t imagine what would have happened if it took much longer to get it off. He had already lost feeling in the finger and the finger was cold from blood loss. I am currently looking for a safer ring for him. I don’t want to go through that again!

Calla Gold

 

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14 Responses to “Titanium vs Gold as Wedding Bands For Your Finger’s Safety”

Linda Havlik February 17th, 2014 at 5:42 pm


I can see why young people want to be different than their parents by choosing another type of metal for their wedding rings, BUT this article gives convincing reasons to re-think that move. There is a reason people have gotten married with gold and platinum for so long.
I didn’t realize that the alternative metals posed a hazard to a man’s fingers. Further reason to not wear harder alternate metals daily. Stay with the classics! Outstanding story Calla!

Calla Gold February 17th, 2014 at 7:53 pm


Hi Linda,
Thanks for your perspective on why young people often look at these alternate metals.
I like your advice to stick with the classics!
Classic Jeweler,
Calla Gold

Tracey D February 18th, 2014 at 10:22 am


I’m guessing a lot of guys would say, my finger will be fine or I’d pull it off before it swells. But that might not be possible.
It was interesting to hear from that ER Dr. Not something that I think about usually. But certainly food for thought.
I liked your story.
T.

Nick Walker February 19th, 2014 at 9:16 pm


Calla,
I had no idea about the quality of titanium bands until now. Based on the facts you have provided, titanium is not the best choice and there are better alternatives for choosing a wedding band. Both style and quality should be observed when making a choice for a ring. I admire the use of the scenario you provided to really visualize and think about how titanium is not the best choice because it is a harder metal. Thanks so much for this information. Until now, I had no idea about the comparative metal quality of titanium bands compared to other metals such as gold, platinum, etc.
I’m very pleased to read it now, before I need a wedding band! I’d go for the safety, I’d go for the gold!

Calla Gold February 20th, 2014 at 7:01 am


Hello Nick,
You are the person that I write these blog posts about alternate metals for. Someone who didn’t know the difference, but found the reason compelling enough to choose a fine metal. Someone who hasn’t yet gone shopping for a wedding band.
Now I know when that time comes you’ll be educated about the pros (price) and cons (safety and versatility).
Your Fine Metals Jeweler,
Calla Gold

Linda Menesez February 20th, 2014 at 6:16 pm


Another great post, Calla! As someone who has serious allergies, this caught my attention. Your story cleverly illustrated your point! I’ve had my wedding ring for a very long time, but if I hear of anyone considering alternative metals for a ring, this will definitely come to my mind.

Linda

Calla Gold February 20th, 2014 at 7:08 pm


Linda,
I’m sorry you’ve had to deal with allergies. My sweet client Dionne has allergies and loves jewelry. She rarely takes off her rings. One night she was spider bit. She doesn’t live too far from me, so I found myself one night sawing off two yellow gold rings at around midnight. She and I with our jammies on.
She was happy to just get them off and take an anti-hystamine and go back to sleep. She now takes her rings off before bed. If one of them was titanium that would have been exceedingly bad news. No friendly neighborhood jeweler sawing it off. It’d be emergency room time and hope they had a motorized ring saw.
Calla Gold

Francis Jansen February 24th, 2014 at 4:38 pm


Gee, that is an interesting perspective as to the kind of metal to choose.
I have always thought it somewhat dangerous for people that use their hands a lot with hard work etc, to wear a ring at all while doing dicey work. Knowing that gold rings can be sawed off and titanium is much harder is knowledge I’m pleased to know. Thanks Calla for the great article.

Calla Gold February 24th, 2014 at 7:06 pm


Hi Francis,
Thank you for your comment. I had wondered how much harder it was to get off the harder metals and a jeweler suggested I watch that interview with the ER doctor video. I knew I had to blog about it then.
Come by the blog again!
Calla Gold

Patricia Schwartz February 24th, 2014 at 8:25 pm


Calla,
I absolutely agree with you when you say that this is not a situation you would like to be in. This situation sounds scary and painful. I’m still cringing at the thought of that happening to me or someone close. This post very perfectly illustrates why sticking with a traditional metal for a wedding ring is the safest and smartest way to go. Thank you for sharing this bit of information, I’ll be sure to pass it along.

Calla Gold February 25th, 2014 at 4:57 pm


Hello Patricia,
I’m glad my little story illustrated my point about the dangers of titanium vs gold wedding bands. Do pass it along. I’ve learned more cool things from emails my friends have sent me and on my Facebook wall.
Calla Gold

Jennifer Parks May 27th, 2014 at 10:09 am


Calla,
We just went through a very similar scenario to the one you posted. My husband and I were camping and he went down a slide, catching his finger on the bolt at the top. As soon as he got to the bottom he was tryign to pull the gold ring off, to no avail. We had to drive a half our to the nearest hospital, it was not really a Podunk one, but somewhere in between ;) Anyway they had two ring cutters and BOTH blades were dull. 1/2 hour after we got to the hospital the ring was still stuck on his finger. Finally there was a paramedic in the ER that got a new cutter of his unit and they got it off. 9 stitches later, we are good and on the road to a complete recovery, but I can’t imagine what would have happened if it took much longer to get it off. He had already lost feeling in the finger and the finger was cold from blood loss. I am currently looking for a safer ring for him. I don’t want to go through that again!

Calla Gold May 27th, 2014 at 4:52 pm


Dear Jennifer,
Your story is a cautionary tale about how a harder metal band like titanium can cause huge problems when stuff happens. I’m so glad that your husband is OK. I can imagine how freaked out you must have been. Not to mention hugely distressed that the hospital had worn out ring cutters.
I’d recommend a nice yellow or white gold ring. If you choose 18kt it is especially buttery and pretty easy to saw off. I do it all the time with my little hand held ring saw and I am not exactly super strong.
I so appreciate you sharing your story. I plan to also share it at the end of my blog post:
http://www.callagold.com/wedding-rings/titanium-vs-gold-for-wedding-bands/
Sometimes someone else’s story just has more of an impact than anything I say.
Thank you for taking the time to tell your tale Jennifer.
Calla Gold

Calla Gold May 27th, 2014 at 4:55 pm


Jennifer,
I meant I put it on the main post in case someone doesn’t check the comments.
Calla Gold

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