Learn More about Inlays and Onlays
While there are several treatment options for repairing damage and restoring strength to teeth affected by tooth decay, many patients are only aware of the most basic procedures, such as dental fillings and dental crowns. A large number of our patients come to us with moderate to advanced stages of tooth decay that can be better treated with inlays and onlays, a lesser known but highly effective restorative dental treatment. Cosmetic dentists Craig and Marcy Goldin answer common questions about this restorative procedure in order to give Troy patients a better understanding of inlays and onlays treatment.
- What are inlays and onlays? Inlays and onlays are an intermediate dental treatment between a dental filling and a dental crown. Like a dental filling, inlays and onlays are placed within the tooth to replace lost tooth enamel. However, like dental crowns, inlays and onlays are fabricated in a dental lab and then bonded to the tooth.
- When are inlays and onlays used? Inlays and onlays are used when Dr. Goldin sees that tooth decay has damaged a tooth to the extent that it cannot be effectively treated with a traditional dental filling. Inlays and onlays can protect more of the tooth than a filling, with the ability to repair the entire biting surface of the tooth, including the tooth’s cusps. Inlays and onlays also allow Dr. Goldin to preserve more of the natural tooth, so it is preferred to a dental crown when more conservative treatment is appropriate.
- How are inlays and onlays placed? Inlays and onlays are placed in a procedure similar to dental crowns treatment. The inlay or onlay is fabricated using a mold of the teeth. When the restorations are complete, they will be adhered to the tooth (which has been cleaned and prepared for treatment) using a bonding material and a curing light. Once in place, the inlay or onlay adds strength and protection to the treated tooth.
- What are the benefits of inlays and onlays? Inlays and onlays allow patients to restore and strengthen a damaged tooth while avoiding more severe dental treatments. Additionally, inlays and onlays are custom-made, ensuring a close fit and color match so they look and feel completely natural.
- What are the alternatives to inlays and onlays? There are many treatment options to consider when dealing with tooth decay and damage. The most appropriate treatment will be largely dependent on how much the tooth enamel has deteriorated. Minor to moderate cases of tooth decay can be treated with a dental filling while more severe cases will require a dental crown. In the most extreme cases, the tooth may require extraction, in which case dental implants can be placed to replace the missing tooth.
Schedule an Appointment
If your tooth has been injured or damaged as a result of tooth decay, Drs. Craig and Marcy Goldin offer restorative treatment to bring strength, function, and beauty back to your smile. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Goldin at your earliest convenience to learn more about inlays and onlays and the many other dental services we provide. We look forward to meeting you!