Inlays and Onlays are methods used to restore normal tooth structure after damage or decay. They are ideal for a tooth that is not sufficiently damaged to require a crown. The best thing about these two procedures is that they are cheaper than dental crowns. They also make a tooth strong and resilient.
How inlays and onlays are done
Inlays and onlays treatments require two appointments. Both of them are done using similar procedures. During the first appointment, the area to be treated will be numbed using local anesthetic and any damage or decay removed by drilling to clean and prepare the tooth for dental inlay or onlay.
The dentist will then take a mold (impression) of the tooth that is damaged. The dentist will send this impression to the dental laboratory for a dental inlay or onlay to be created. While the creation of the inlay or onlay continues, the dentist will create a temporary restoration (filling or cover) for your tooth.
This will protect your tooth until the next appointment. During the second appointment, your dentist will remove the temporary restoration and ensure that the inlay or onlay fits. The treatment will be completed with a polish to give a smooth and attractive finish.
Inlays are used to repair the chewing tooth surface. There are different materials that can be used for inlays including composite resin, porcelain, and gold. Dental inlays are usually durable and don’t usually crack teeth when exposed to hot and cold. Most of the materials used except gold, give the teeth a natural look.
Dental onlays are similar to inlays but the difference is that onlays are located in a different area of the tooth and treat larger areas. Inlays are located on the cusps while onlays are located on the biting surface and extend to one or more cusps. Onlays are usually made of materials such as gold, porcelain, and composite resin.
Benefits of inlays and onlays
Inlays and onlays are durable as they are made from materials that are tough and hardwearing. In fact, these materials can last for about 30 years
Prevent the need for more dental treatment in future
This is mainly because of the fact that they make teeth last longer meaning that a dental treatment will less likely be needed in future.
Since they are cheaper than a dental crown, Inlays and onlays enable a patient to address tooth damage effectively at an affordable cost
Strong and stable
Inlays and onlays are strong and can withstand pressure and extreme temperatures for a long period of time. This makes them ideal for patients who have salvageable tooth structure.
Easy to clean
Since inlays and onlays are tailored to fit perfectly with minimal preparation, cleaning them is easier than cleaning a dental crown.