Going to the dentist for a check-up and finding out that you may need a filling of one or more teeth used to be a traumatic experience. This was because the material used to fit inside the teeth and replace the loss from tooth decay were made from gold.
Gold isn’t exactly a colour that blends in with the natural tooth enamel. However, dentistry has now moved past that. Inlays and onlays have replaced fillings and they provide a far better result.
What are Inlays?
Inlays, like fillings, are fitted into the tooth where there has been decay. They provide more restoration than a filling does, but cannot be used if a crown is needed. They do not extend over the cusps and are almost unnoticeable.
Not to mention that the material used is either porcelain or a composite resin that matches the colour of the tooth enamel. Inlays are extremely durable and they restore the chewing surface of the tooth almost instantaneously.
The procedure is simple. A mould is taken by your Richmond dentist after the decayed tooth and enamel has been removed. This mould is then sent to a laboratory and the inlay is manufactured. With the perfect inlay, the dentist can cement it properly in the tooth. The dentist will most likely use local anaesthetic while performing this surgery.
What are Onlays?
Onlays are very similar to inlays. They provide restoration to any teeth with decay that still have no need for a crown. They provide more restoration than an inlay because they extend onto the back of the tooth and replace one or more cusps. The process for inlays and onlays is much the same. Bonding is often used to seal the onlay onto the tooth which increases the strength as well as the durability.
Benefits of Onlays and Inlays
What are the advantages of both onlays and inlays? They both provide almost invisible restoration options because the resin or porcelain used will be manufactured to match the colour of your natural tooth enamel. These materials that are used have more than one benefit: they’re also extremely tough and durable, allowing the tooth restoration to last for up to 30 years.
They strengthen the teeth up to 75%. These dental treatments are so effective that they increase tooth life and decrease the need to have other treatments in the future. Unlike fillings, inlays do not contract after they have been inserted into the cavity – avoiding the problem of bacteria finding a way in and cause tooth decay.
An onlay provides a solution to a very specific problem and is less invasive than getting a crown fitted because crowns require more tooth enamel to be removed. The onlay is less expensive and more effective than a crown.
It is inevitable that damage may occur to our teeth at one stage or another, but it is not impossible to solve the problem quickly and effectively. Inlays and onlays can be inserted and finally bonded to the damaged tooth in as little as two sittings; they can last decades-long, and they are mostly cost-effective and almost invisible. What is not to love about inlays and onlays?