Onlays & Inlays

Onlays & Inlays 

 After having carefully removed your mercury fillings and any other metal alloy following the protocol described in our "amalgam removal" page, you migth need a ceramic Inlay or an Onlay.

Onlays are essentially identical to inlays with the exception that one or more of the chewing cusps have also been affected and need to be included in the restoration.

An onlay or inlay restoration is a custom made filling made of composite material, gold, or tooth-colored porcelain.  Porcelain onlays or inlays are popular because they resemble your natural tooth and of course, they are the only type we offer at COSMETIC, LASER AND CEREC DENTISTRY.  An onlay or inlay is sometimes also referred to as a partial crown.  Porcelain onlays or inlays are usually made by a professional dental laboratory and is permanently cemented onto the tooth a week later. Please also read our page on CEREC DENTISTRY for single appointment ceramic restaurations.

Onlay or inlays can be utilized to conservatively repair teeth that had large amalgams or defective fillings.  Onlay or inlays are an ideal alternative to crowns (caps) because less tooth structure is removed in the preparation of onlays or inlays. 
As with most dental restorations, onlay or inlays are not always permanent and may someday require replacement.  They are highly durable and will last many years, giving you a beautiful long lasting smile.

Reasons for onlay or inlay restorations:

  • Amalgam replacement
  • Broken or fractured teeth.
  • Cosmetic enhancement.
  • Decayed teeth.
  • Fractured fillings.
  • Large fillings.

What does getting an onlay or inlay involve?

An onlay or inlay procedure usually requires two appointments.  Your first appointment will include taking several highly accurate impressions (molds) that will be used to create your custom onlay or inlay and a temporary restoration.

While the tooth is numb, the dentist will remove any decay and/or old filling materials.  The space will then be thoroughly cleaned and carefully prepared, shaping the surface to properly fit an onlay or inlay restoration.  A temporary filling will be applied to protect the tooth while your onlay or inlay is made by a dental laboratory.

At your second appointment, your new onlay or inlay will be carefully and precisely cemented into place.  A few adjustments may be necessary to ensure a proper fit and that your bite is comfortable.

You will receive care instruction at the conclusion of your treatment.  Good oral hygiene practices, a proper diet, and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new onlay or inlay.

Or we can give you a CEREC RESTORATION in one appointment instead!