What are inlays and onlays?
Inlays and onlays are used to strengthen damaged teeth. While they are used the same way as regular fillings, inlays and onlays are made of porcelain and are specifically placed in the patient’s cavity or any other tooth damage. However, its main purpose is to provide support to the affected tooth. Tooth damage can become severe, weakening the tooth enough to hinder it from supporting regular fillings.
Inlays and onlays are both made of porcelain. The difference between the two is that inlays are placed on the inside of the affected tooth, similar to a cavity filling. On the other hand, onlays are only placed to cover the surface of the tooth like a dental crown.
What can I expect from the placement of inlays and onlays?
During your dental appointment, Dr. Smith will initially get rid of the damaged or decayed part in your tooth. Once it is removed, a mold will be placed on the affected tooth to serve as the basis for the custom porcelain inlay or onlay. In the meantime, a temporary filling will be placed on the prepared tooth as you wait for the permanent ones, which usually take several weeks. When they are already available, you have to make another visit to Dr. Smith’s office to have them placed on your tooth.
On your next and final visit to our office in Beaumont, Texas, Dr. Smith will remove a thin surface of the affected tooth to make way for the porcelain inlay or onlay, as well as to bond it to one’s natural tooth. They are then placed using a bonding material that will be hardened with the use of a special light.
What are the benefits of inlays and onlays?
Aside from strengthening the tooth, inlays and onlays make great cosmetic treatments due to their porcelain material. Moreover, they are unlikely to discolor over time. During the placement of inlays and onlays, they are sealed tightly to the tooth to keep bacteria from getting in. They are also very easy to clean and are not prone to staining.
Schedule a Consultation
If you would like more information on inlays/onlays, contact our Beaumont, TX office today. Call (409) 895-0089 today to schedule a consultation with LVI dentist Dr. Joel Smith!