What is The Role of Inlays & Onlays in Dentistry?

What is The Role of Inlays & Onlays in Dentistry?

Mar 01, 2020

If you are keen on your research, you find that there are many dental appliances used in dentistry. Every kind of oral problem has one or more appliances that can be used to treat it. Restorative dentistry in ​Soni Smiles focuses on the functionality of teeth before the aesthetic appeal. However, the after results will get you excited because of aesthetic improvements. This is often the case with ​inlays and onlays for tooth restoration.

What Are Inlays & Onlays?

They are a treatment alternative offered for damaged teeth. When a tooth suffers decay, part of the enamel is damaged. To restore it from the damage a filling is necessary. Inlays and onlays are considered as types of dental fillings. However, they are termed as ‘indirect’ dental fillings. This is because they are manufactured outside the mouth, then cemented afterward.

Usually, the teeth are very damaged to be treated by a mere dental filling, but not too damaged that it requires a dental crown. The two feature porcelain materials that are made specifically for the unique needs of a patient.

When Are They Used?

All these dental restoration treatments are used when a tooth incurs damage. The damage is usually external. The main reasons why you would get an inlay or onlay is tooth decay. The decay process is commonly associated with damaging the enamel of teeth. Other than that, you can get either of the two appliances if you have a broken tooth.

What Are the Differences?

​Dental onlay is used to cover the cusp of the tooth entirely. This features the entire chewing surface of a tooth. On the other hand, a ​dental inlay covers inside the cusp, rather than the whole surface. This means that only the damaged part of the tooth is covered by the inlay.

Onlays VS. Dental Crowns

When it comes to replacing the damaged part of the enamel, either a crown or inlay is used. In ​Clearwater, FL, the dentist decides which one best fits the situation by considering the extent of the tooth damage.

A dental crown cups the entire tooth. On the other hand, an onlay overs the chewing surface only. Therefore, if a lot of your natural tooth structure has been lost, a crown will be preferred instead of an onlay, and vice versa.

Inlays VS. Dental Fillings

Both inlays and dental fillings are used for minor tooth damage. In most cases, the two are used interchangeably. However, a dental filling is mostly relied on for small restorations. Thanks to the strength of Inlays, they can be used for larger filling requirements that a dental filling would not be best at treating.

Why Would You Choose Inlays or Onlays?

The decision for getting these fillings has to be well informed. For one, they can be expensive, given that most dental insurance companies do not cover them. Some of the benefits to enjoy include:

They are customized for your needs – when it comes to inlays, they should be the exact shape and size as the restorative need. Anything bigger and smaller will only allow for re-entry of bacteria on your tooth.

They do not expand and contract – most dental fillings expand and contract with temperature changes. This often causes a tooth to crack, further damaging the structure. Inlays do not expand and contract over time.

Aesthetic improvements – unlike with dental fillings that come in different colors, inlays are tooth-colored. This makes them more cosmetically appealing than amalgam fillings and other types.

They are less invasive – if you compare dental crowns and onlays, onlays are less invasive. The procedure for getting a dental crown involves removing a considerable amount of enamel to make room for the crown. Since an onlay does not cover your entire tooth, you stand to retain more of your tooth’s natural structure.

Why Are The Procedures Uncommon?

It is not every day that your dentist will recommend an inlay or even an onlay. One of the main reasons is that teeth can be restored proficiently with either dental fillings or crowns. Other than that, the success of your treatment depends on the skills of your dentist. They have to be meticulous when installing either of the two. For other people, the costs of these dental appliances can be off-putting, more so when the insurance policy does not cover them.

We care about your smile and it's looks. We are located just a little away from you and providing general, family & cosmetic dentistry appointments surrounding the area of Clearwater:

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