What Our Fort Worth Patients Should Know About Inlays and Onlays

By Dr. Damon on October 02, 2013

Inlays / Onlays - Restorative Dentistry for Tooth Decay and Damage Major tooth decay and tooth damage can be a major pain. Often quite literally. When you chew or when you eat certain foods, you may notice major problems with sensitivity and acute discomfort. In addition to this, there are plenty of issues to consider when it comes to the strength of the tooth. More serious tooth damage can occur simply from chewing and biting as normal.

In order to address all of these issues, it's important that you meet with a restorative and cosmetic dentist. By doing this, you will be able to receive a dental restoration that will address the tooth damage and prevent further dental health problems down. One particular dental restoration that may prove most helpful is an inlay or an onlay.

About Inlays and Onlays

Inlays and onlays are dental restorations that are ideal for major problems with dental injury or decay. They are similar in some way to dental fillings but are able to fix more serious problems with tooth decay and tooth damage. For example if your cavity was too large to place a filling, an Inlay or Onlay can be placed rather then a crown. Conservation of tooth structure is the main benefit with these restorations. If you have just one tooth cusp broken, they are so effective that they can actually replace the cusps (the biting surfaces of the teeth) as opposed to grinding the entire tooth down for a crown.

The Inlays and Onlays Procedure

The first step of this restorative dentistry procedure is the preparation of the tooth. Damaged or decayed tooth structure is carefully removed, leaving behind only healthy and stable tooth structure around which the dental restoration can be built. An impression is taken of the prepped tooth from which the final inlay or onlay will be crafted. It will be sent out to a lab where a technician will craft it out of porcelain.

When the final inlay or onlay is ready, it is checked one last time for fit and overall match in contour and color. Final adjustments are made as needed before it is finally cemented in place.

Alternatives to Inlays and Onlays

As we mentioned above, inlays and onlays are used when a dental filling is not viable. When the damage to a tooth is so serious that not even inlays or onlays are an ideal solution, the best option for care is the use of a dental crown (aka cap). The crown fits over the damaged tooth to protect it from further harm.

Making the Best Decision for Your Needs

During your consultation, all of your options will be discussed in full detail so that you can make an informed and conservative decision regarding your dental health options. We will make sure that you understand the treatment process so that you remain well-informed each step of the way.

Learn More About Inlays and Onlays

For more information about inlays and onlays as well as your many other options for advanced restorative dentistry treatments, be sure to contact our Fort Worth, TX dental care clinic today. The entire team here looks forward to discussing these matters with you and helping you get the healthy smile that you have always wanted.

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