Inlays and Onlays Treatment
By J. Brent Gorrell on March 28, 2013
If you're unhappy with your old metal fillings, inlays or onlays may be right for you. Inlays and onlays are tooth colored restorative treatments which can be used to replace old metal fillings or treat new cavities. We invite you to schedule a consultation at the Mountain View cosmetic dentistry practice of Dr. J. Brent Gorrell to see if you're a candidate for inlays or onlays treatment.
What Are Inlays and Onlays and How Do They Differ?
Inlays and onlays are tooth-colored treatments used to repair dental damage caused by decay. Inlays and onlays are similar to dental fillings in that they are used to treat cavities, but they do differ in a number of ways. The main difference is that inlays and onlays are generally custom made for the patient, in a dental lab, from an impression taken of the damaged tooth.
Inlays and onlays are both made of tooth-colored materials, either porcelain or composite resin. They differ from one another in placement and the extent of decay each treats. Inlays are used when damage is isolated within the cusps, the bumpy structures on the biting surface of the the molars. Onlays are used when decay and damage is more extensive, extending beyond one or more cusps. Because onlays are used to treat larger areas of damage, they are sometimes called partial crowns.
What Is the Treatment Process for Inlays and Onlays?
Inlay and onlay treatment usually requires two dental visits. During the first visit, the tooth is cleaned, and a temporary filling is placed. An impression is taken of the treated tooth and sent to a dental lab for the inlay or onlay to be made. Once the inlay or onlay is ready, a second dental visit will be required to place the inlay or onlay and complete treatment.
The Benefits of Inlays and Onlays Treatment
There are many benefits to inlays and onlays treatment. Inlays and onlays are made from tooth-colored materials so your restorations will be completely unnoticeable, giving you confidence in knowing that you have a flawless smile. The dental materials that are used in inlays and onlays are durable and long lasting, and won't damage your teeth like traditional silver fillings are prone to do. Silver fillings are sensitive to changes in temperature and expand and contract in the presence of hot or cold foods. This can cause the teeth to crack. With porcelain or composite resin inlays and onlays, the strength of your teeth will be restored and protected from further damage.
Are You a Candidate for Inlays or Onlays Treatment?
Candidates for inlays or onlays treatment may include patients with old metal fillings, new cavities, or other forms of tooth damage. For those with damage too extensive for inlays or onlays treatment, Dr. Gorrell offers many other restorative procedures. For our patients in Mountain View, dental crowns are a great option for repairing broken teeth or teeth severely weakened by large fillings. For those with missing teeth, dental implants are another popular treatment for restoring the look and function of your smile. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Gorrell to see which treatments are best for you!
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“I moved out of the area 20 years ago and happily drive 40 miles to still see Dr. Gorrell. Best dentist ever.” Kevin B.