Inlay & Onlay Porcelain Restoration Services
At Milltown Dental we believe your beautiful smile is the best way to show off your excellent oral health. It not only reflects your commitment to your oral health, but provides you with the confidence of a winning smile. One of the most affordable and natural cosmetic restoration treatments for dull or damaged teeth is inlay and onlay porcelain restorations.
What are Inlays/Onlays?
This dental restoration method provides you with a stronger, more natural looking solution than a composite filling. It is long lasting, comfortable and aesthetically pleasing. This is an option that can often be used as an alternative to a full crown, maintaining the integrity of your tooth. Inlays and onlays are customized to match the look of your existing teeth or formed to improve the look of your smile. They are crafted in a dental lab and are then bonded to your damaged tooth. The result is a natural looking tooth that is both functional and attractive.
Inlays and onlays are available in a number of materials including resin, gold and porcelain. We use porcelain as it provides the most natural look, won’t discolour over time and also provides longevity and stability. In some cases, resin is used on back molars if you tend to grind your teeth or have a misaligned bite.
What is the difference between an inlay and an onlay?
An inlay is a pre-moulded filling that is fitted into the “grooves” of a tooth. They do not extend over the cusps of your tooth and instead just cover the area of your tooth used for chewing. This restorative method repairs a damaged tooth or a tooth with decay that has not affected the tooth’s “cusps.” Inlays provide an invisible restoration that is highly durable.
As with inlays, onlays are also pre-moulded tooth restorations. However, they not only fit on the chewing surface of the tooth, but they extend over the biting surface(s) as well. An onlay is often recommended if a tooth is at risk of cracking during a regular filling procedure.
Why would I need an inlay or onlay?
An inlay or onlay may be recommended when your tooth has too much damage or decay for a filling to be effective, yet not enough damage to call for a crown. This can include:
- Broken or fractured teeth
- Cosmetic enhancement
- Decayed teeth
- Fractured fillings
- Large fillings
Why choose Inlays & Onlays?
There are many benefits to choosing inlays and onlays for your cosmetic dentistry needs. Advantages include:
- Security: This treatment allows us to preserve as much of your tooth as possible. This keeps your tooth intact for a more solid solution and is ideal for teeth with minimal to moderate decay. It is an ideal crown alternative as it preserves more of your tooth for better function while still restoring decay or damage.
- Natural Colour: Not only can we match your tooth colour, but also provide you with a long lasting colour match that is not prone to discolouration over time.
- Easy Cleaning: With a custom fit and more of your natural tooth preserved it can be easier to clean your inlay and onlays than dental crowns.
- Better Fit: Porcelain onlays ensure a more precise fit than composite fillings since composite fillings can sometimes shrink.
- Better Seal: In tight spaces between your teeth, inlays offer a better seal to protect against bacteria than composite fillings.
- Tooth Protection: Onlays help to protect the integrity of teeth that are weakened by damage or decay since more of your natural tooth can be preserved.
How are inlays/onlays applied?
Your inlay/onlay procedure is usually performed with two appointments, each taking about an hour.
- First Visit: At your first visit we will prepare the damaged tooth using a local anesthetic before drilling to remove and clean out decay. We will then take an impression of the tooth which is sent to the dental lab to customize your inlay/onlay. A temporary restoration will be inserted to protect your tooth until your inlay/onlay is ready.
- Second Visit: Once your inlay/onlay arrives, we will remove the temporary restoration. We will check your inlay/onlay for fit, colour and proper contact with your adjacent teeth. We will also ensure that your bite is comfortable and that your inlay/onlay will not interfere with other teeth. Once you are satisfied with the look and fit, we will bond your inlay/onlay to your tooth. Some polishing is performed to perfect the fit and look of your new tooth.
Following your final appointment, you might experience some slight discomfort as you get accustomed to your inlay or onlay, but in most cases recovery from the procedure is immediate.
Dr. Julie Boudreault will recommend inlays/onlays as a restorative treatment when it is the best option for your needs. However, if you are interested in cosmetic treatments, feel free to discuss this option with her. You can also ask any questions you might have about the suitability of this restorative option for your dental treatment plan. For more information, give us a call at (905) 878-8528 or contact us here.