Inlays and Onlays
Inlays and onlays, also called indirect fillings, are dental restorations that provide a stronger, well-fitting and long lasting solution to tooth decay or similar oral damage. These restorations can be of great help for both aesthetic and functional point.
Reasons for inlays and onlays restorations
- Fractured or broken teeth
- Improved cosmetic appearance
- Repair of decayed teeth
- Fractured or large fillings
Benefits of inlays and onlays
- Colour of tooth – Apart from improving aesthetic longevity, they will not get discoloured over time in the same way that tooth-colored resin fillings will.
- Protect tooth structure – They protect healthy tooth structure while restoring damaged or decayed areas helping to ensure functional longevity.
- Easy tooth cleaning – Since the preparation is minimal and the tooth can be covered, it is easy to clean, similar to complete coverage restorative options like dental crowns. Moreover, composite fillings may shrink, whilst prefabricated gold or porcelain inlays/onlays will not, ensuring the perfect fit.
- Filling a tight space – If you have a cavity in between the teeth, choose inlays rather than a composite filling. These are suitable options for sealing teeth to prevent a build up of bacteria. They can be cleaned easily, will not stain and provide excellent longevity.
- Strength and stability – They are a restorative solution for tooth decay. The durable material and superior fit makes them the perfect choice that can help in strengthening a damaged tooth.
- Weak Tooth Protector – They can protect weak areas of the tooth. However, this method does not involve complete tooth reshaping.
Inlays and onlays procedure
An inlay or onlay method can be completed in two dental visits. At the first visit, your dentist will prepare the damaged tooth. She/he will take an impression of the tooth and then send it to the laboratory where the restoration will be expertly handcrafted. Inlays and onlays are usually made of gold, resin or porcelain.
Your inlay and onlay specialist in Croydon will discuss with you the appropriate material to be used. If aesthetics is not your concern, then gold is a suitable option. Porcelain offers improved aesthetics and can be used for the “smile line” areas. Resin materials are a suitable option for people who grind teeth and suffer from malocclusion problems.
During the second visit, the temporary material will be removed and the new inlay or onlay fitted. They are stable restorations and your dentist will ensure that it fits properly. She/he will also check your bite to ensure that there are no occlusion-related problems that might affect the margins of the tooth restoration. Once fitted, the restoration will be bonded onto the tooth and the margins polished for a superior finish.
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