When more than half of the tooth’s biting surface becomes damaged over time, the dentist will use an onlay or inlay for it. If you have not heard about what inlays and onlays are, you are not alone. It is a type of treatment method that cosmetic dentists use for your teeth. Read on to learn more about inlays and onlays in cosmetic dentistry!
What are Inlays and Onlays?
Onlays and inlays can be made from porcelain, composite resin or gold. These pieces are bonded to the area of the tooth that is damaged. An inlay is actually similar to a filling. It is used on the inside of the cusp tips of the tooth. An onlay is made of a more substantial reconstruction. It is just like the inlay but it extends over one or more of the tooth’s cusps. Gold has traditionally been the material that is used for onlays and inlays. However, these days, porcelain has become more popular because of its color and strength, which matches the natural color of your teeth more closely.
How are Inlays and Onlays Applied?
Inlays and onlays will need you to go for two appointments to finish the procedure. On the first visit, the filling will be replaced. So, the decaying or damaged area of the tooth has to be removed. This is so that tooth can be prepared for the onlay or inlay. To make sure you have the right bite and fit, an impression of the tooth is created by the dentist and sent out to the lab to fabricate. The dentist will place a temporary sealant over the tooth, then set the date for the next appointment.
At the next appointment, the temporary sealant will be removed. The dentist will ensure that the inlay or onlay fits well. If the fit is good, then it shall be bonded to the tooth using resin before it is polished up and given a smooth finish.
Considerations for Inlays and Onlays
The traditional fillings will serve to reduce the strength of a natural tooth. Inlays and onlays, which are bonded to your teeth using strong resin, can increase the tooth’s strength significantly. Therefore, there are able to last about 10 to 30 years. Sometimes, when the damage to the tooth is not great enough for you to do a crown, onlays are a good alternative for that.
What is the Difference Between Inlays and Onlays?
The difference between inlays and onlays is that inlays are made to fit in between the small ridges on the back of your tooth. Inlays will cover only a smaller area of the biting surface. Meanwhile, the restoration is an onlay if it covers more than one of the ridges.
Top Dental Services at Dr. Alex Rubinov
Dr. Alex Rubinov is an established cosmetic dentist here in New York City. Dr. Alex provides different dental services, such as porcelain veneers, teeth whitening, smile makeovers, dental implants, and more. Come try these services today! Feel free to contact us for more information.