Inlays and Onlays

An inlay and onlay is a type of restoration that helps to improve the look and functionality of your smile. They are made to look like your natural teeth and can replace areas that are broken, chipped or that have larger fillings. Inlays sit more inside the cusps or grooves of the tooth. An onlay sits on the very top of the tooth and is more suitable for when a full dental crown is not needed.

Why Are Inlays and Onlays Needed?

Either of these restorations are needed for various reasons. Many people prefer inlays and onlays to other restorations because they’re more long-lasting and durable. Some reasons you’d need this type of restoration includes:

  • Your tooth has broken or cracked only on the very top
  • You have a large filling
  • You have an area of large decay (a large cavity)
  • You want to replace older fillings

Who Is A Candidate for Inlays and Onlays?

We will examine your teeth to determine if you might need or will benefit from an inlay or onlay. Most patients who want these restorations can easily have them placed. Most inlays and onlays can last for years or even decades. You can think of them as a mixture between a full dental crown and a filling. They offer the durability of a crown, but are the same size as a typical filling.

What Happens During the Procedure for Inlays and Onlays?

The procedure begins with anesthetic to numb the area for your comfort. We then remove any old filling material or decay as well as smooth the area of any jagged edges. The next step is to take impressions and use these to make a new inlay or onlay. Once the restoration is made, you’ll come back in for a second appointment so that it can be placed. We then file down the inlay or onlay to improve its fit and bite. You can care for your new restoration as you would any other tooth in your mouth and expect it to last for many years.

If you would like to learn more about inlays and onlays, call us today and we can get you in for an appointment at your earliest convenience.

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