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What is the Procedure for Inlays and Onlays?

By March 30, 2015 - 4:51am

Inlays and onlays are used to restore teeth where there’s been a fracture or decay. If a tooth has too much damage for a filling, but not enough damage to require a full crown, either inlay or onlay is used to repair the damage.

Why Are Inlays and Onlays Used?

Dental inlays are used instead of a filling or to replace an old filling that is on the inside of the crown or that fits inside the biting edges (cusps) of a tooth. An onlay is used when cusps need to be replaced and is more extensive than an inlay.

The Benefits of Having an Inlay or an Onlay

Both help strengthen a tooth, up to 70%, when compared to metal fillings which reduce the overall strength of a tooth. Both are incredibly durable and made from materials that will last for approximately 30 years. They both prolong the life of that tooth and will prevent the need for further dental treatment.

What is the Procedure for Inlays and Onlays?

In total, it takes two appointments for the onlay or inlay treatment to be finished. They both need a very similar procedure. A local anesthetic will be used to numb the tooth area, then the decayed area of the tooth drilled out to prepare and clean the tooth for the onlay or inlay.

Once the tooth is prepared, the dentist will fill a tray with putty for the impression mold which will then be sent to a laboratory where an onlay or inlay will be made. They are typically crafted from porcelain, gold or composite resin. After the taking of the impression, your dentist will place a temporary restoration to protect your tooth from further decay or fracture until the next appointment to have the restoration treatment completed. At the second appointment, the temporary restoration will be removed and the inlay or onlay fitted and then cemented or bonded to the tooth. Once the bonding is complete, your dentist will polish the tooth to ensure that it’s smooth and perfect.

How Do They Feel Afterward?

You may experience a minor level of discomfort after the procedure, and the surface of your new and improved tooth may feel a little odd, but getting used to your inlay or onlay will not take long. Your dentist will test the way your teeth fit together, but adjustments can always be made afterward. You may feel some discomfort in the tissue surrounding the treated tooth from the local anesthetic injections. If it lasts longer than a week, then make a follow-up appointment with your dentist to figure out whether or not something is wrong. You should also ask your dentist how to properly care for your restoration, and listen to any advice he might have about caring for the rest of your teeth to keep away any further damage, decay or pain.

Speak With Your Dentist

If you are looking to have an inlay or an onlay placed and would like to figure out whether or not it’s actually an option in your case, speak to your dentist. They will be able to provide the necessary recommendation for what you are considering. If you do not have a dentist, or would like a second opinion, there are many dentists who deal Emergency dental patients in Williamsville, NY

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