Inlays & Onlays
Your dentist may recommend inlays and onlays as a form of general dental treatment if your teeth have fillings which need to be replaced or removed. Even fillings referred to as permanent do not really last forever. This is because your teeth are exposed daily to factors that contribute to the degradation of the enamel of your teeth.
Among the factors that can damage the enamel are chewing on hard food, exposure of the teeth to temperature variants, accidental dental injury, and cavities caused by acid from bacterial plaque.
At Napa Valley Dental Group in Napa, CA., inlays and onlays can be provided as needed by our patients.
What Differentiates an Onlay from an Inlay?
An onlay is a type of filling that goes beyond the tips or cusps of your affected tooth. An inlay is filling that stays within the boundaries of the tips of your tooth. Your dentist will recommend the most suitable kind of filling for you based on the extent of the decay on your tooth.
As a form of dental restoration, both kinds of fillings are appropriate to use for teeth that are only mildly or moderately decayed. This means that the tooth is needing a filling should still have enough natural dental material on its own, which negates the need for a crown.
What Takes Place During a Filling Procedure?
Two visits are needed to complete the procedure. The first step to getting an inlay or onlay is tooth cleaning with drilling. An anesthetic is used before drilling takes place. Drilling and cleaning will help your dentist remove unneeded grime and decay, along with other debris inside your decayed tooth.
Once cleaned, your dentist will take an impression of the tooth needing treatment. This impression will be the basis for the inlay or the onlay to be made at a dental laboratory. Your dentist will put a temporary filling in your tooth to protect it from further damage or decay.
During your second visit, your dentist will remove the temporary filling. The filling that came from the laboratory will be fitted on your affected tooth.
If it doesn’t fit well, your dentist will make minor adjustments. If it fits well, your onlay or inlay will be bonded or attached to your tooth. Finally, your tooth with the new filling will be polished to make it blend with your natural teeth.