Inlays and Onlays
If you have experienced tooth decay or trauma related damage, it is still possible to salvage your natural tooth. While this can sometimes be accomplished with traditional fillings, our team at Rockton Dental may implement several advanced restoration techniques to give you the best results. One popular treatment method that our team uses to accomplish this is inlays and onlays. These are specialized fillings that can provide you with better results than traditional composite fillings.
What Are Inlays?
Inlays are considered an indirect restoration. Inlays serve the same purpose as a traditional composite filling but must be completed over the course of two separate visits. Inlays can be made from one of several materials, but ceramic is the most popular. Gold is another popular choice because it is one of the most durable materials available.
An inlay fits within a void in your tooth that is created by the removal of decayed material. An inlay is used specifically for voids in the body of your tooth and does not cover any of the cusp, which is the surface of your tooth used for chewing. If you choose a ceramic material, it will be color-matched to your existing tooth material so that it blends seamlessly with your smile. Our team’s ability to match your enamel color is one of the reasons that inlays are more popular than traditional fillings.
What Are Onlays?
Onlays are similar to inlays except that they cover a larger portion of your tooth’s surface area. An onlay is used when you have decay or damage to the cusp of your tooth. Onlays can be made from the same materials as inlays and are installed in the same manner. An onlay is a great way to restore the strength of your tooth and alleviate discomfort caused by decay.
What Is the Procedure?
The procedure for receiving an inlay or onlay is straightforward and will require two separate visits with our team. When you arrive, our professional will begin by administering a local anesthetic to ensure that you are comfortable during the operation. After it has taken effect, they will remove the damaged material from your tooth. They will make a mold of the tooth and place a temporary filling to protect the tooth while your restoration is being made.
This mold is created in a lab. It will take several weeks for our team to receive the finished product. Once your inlay or onlay is ready, one of our team members will contact you and set your follow-up appointment. They will then remove the temporary filling and place the inlay or onlay into the void with cement.
Inlays and onlays are one of the most durable restorations available. If you practice good oral hygiene and receive regular professional cleanings, then your insert can last for many years. According to Healthline, your inlay can last up to two decades, especially when it is made of Gold.
If you have suffered tooth decay but do not want to settle for a traditional filling that is less aesthetically pleasing, you may be a good candidate for an inlay or onlay. You can schedule your appointment with our team at Rockton Dental by calling our office at (815) 624-3269.