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What are inlays and onlays?
Inlays and onlays are used to restore broken and decayed teeth, and they can be made out of materials such as composite, porcelain, or plastic. Both inlays and onlays are used when a filling won’t be sufficient to fix the damages. So you may be wondering what the difference is between an inlay and an onlay. They are the same procedure but are differentiated by location. For example, inlays are used to fill spaces between your cusps (or the rising portions of the tooth), and onlays tend to cover one or more of a tooth’s cusps. Onlays are colloquially known as “partial crowns.”
“This is a fantastic, clean and professional facility. The dentist does not try to force sell anything. Very pleased. It is really a breath of fresh air to be able to get work done without getting pressured. He is very gentle and he got rid of an issue that I had tried to get another dentist to do years ago and they wanted to do other stuff ‘first’. I can’t say enough good things about this provider. Highly recommend, and I hate dentists.” 🙂Ginger B.
What are the benefits of inlays & onlays?
If you are a good candidate for inlays and onlays, they may be a better fit than both fillings and crowns. Here are a few benefits:
- Can fix decay and severe fractures
- Returns functionality to a tooth
- Won’t weaken a tooth’s durability as much as fillings
- Inlays and onlays are fitted, so they don’t need to be shaved down for a crown placement
- They come in a wide variety of materials to fit your aesthetic needs and budget
Learn About Our Cosmetic Dental Treatments.
What kinds of materials are available to me?
Each material comes with its own pros and cons–take a look:
- Creates a seal that keeps out bacteria
- Can be set in one or two visits
- Can be matched to natural tooth shades
Unfortunately, composite inlays/onlays don’t last as long and can be worn down quickly. If you enjoy staining foods/beverages, this material can also be discolored. Also, while this material can usually be placed in a couple of visits, some people may experience soreness or sensitivity after the procedure.
- Is incredibly durable and won’t corrode
- Can last for many years
Those who are considering gold should also remember that they don’t always work well if you have silver amalgam in your mouth. Sometimes people experience “galvanic shock,” where metallic elements cause a current that also causes discomfort and sensitivity.
- Can preserve more of the tooth’s natural structure
- Can look very similar to a tooth’s natural color
Porcelain can be difficult to work with compared to other materials, so your dentist needs to have plenty of experience placing them. Also, while porcelain can be great for aesthetics, it can be expensive and break more easily over time.
What happens during the procedure?
First, Dr. Huang will consult and help you weigh the pros and cons to see which kind of material works best for your situation. When you go in for your appointment, the dentist will inject some local anesthetic. Once you are numb, the decayed or damaged portion of your tooth will be drilled away.
The dentist will shave the tooth and take an impression. After the impression is sent to the lab, you’ll come back for another appointment and the customized inlay/onlay will be bonded to your tooth.
Are you considering an inlay or onlay? Contact All In One Dental today!
Call All In One Dental Innovations today at (925) 828-9811 to set up a consultation to determine if an inlay or onlay is a good option for you. You can also contact us by requesting an appointment online.
All In One Dental is located at 7046 Dublin Blvd, Dublin, CA 94568