Inlays and onlays are two types of restorations that your dentist can suggest if you have a cavity in your tooth that needs to be filled. An inlay is a small filling that fits into the biting surface of a tooth while an onlay covers a larger area of the tooth and is better suited to bigger cavities. For many years, gold has been used to make inlays and onlays because it is a hard material and lasts for a long time. Nowadays, tooth-coloured porcelain is also used and gives the restored tooth a more natural look, which many patients prefer.
Why Would I Need Inlays & Onlays?
For large cavities that we are unable to fill, then Inlays and Onlays effectively bridge the gap between fillings and crowns. They are hard-wearing and long-lasting piece of tooth-coloured ceramic material that is designed to exactly fit your tooth.
What Are Onlays?
Onlays are smaller than crowns but still quite extensive restorations involving one or more cusps (the pointy part on the biting surface of your teeth)
What Are Inlays?
Inlays are smaller again and do not involve the cusps, but they are more extensive than a typical filling.
By using an onlay to repair a broken tooth we are able to retain as much healthy tooth as possible. This imparts extra strength and helps prevent further fracturing. Inlays are used in smaller restorations, usually where strength and/or aesthetics are most important.
Inlays and onlays are very durable, even under high levels of stress, and they have outstanding aesthetic qualities.
How Are Inlays & Onlays Made?
Inlays and onlays can be made in a dental laboratory by a technician. While these are being made, you will wear a temporary filling. When your inlay or onlay is ready your dentist will glue it into place using a special adhesive, after removing the temporary filling, giving you a nice and secure finish.
Book Your Appointment Today
If you have a hole in your tooth or your worried about a potential dental problem, please do not hesitate to call us and book your appointment today.