Inlays & Onlays

What are Dental Inlays and Onlays?

Inlays and onlays are frequently used to restore teeth that are severely damaged by decay or wear. They are usually applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth.

An inlay fits within the contours of the tooth (in a hole inside the tooth). An onlay not only fits within these contours, but it also covers the chewing surface of the teeth to build up its shape. Their use helps to conserve much of the natural tooth structure.

Inlays and onlays restorations are made to rear teeth that have a mild to moderate amount of decay. They can also be used to restore teeth that are cracked or fractured if the damage is not severe enough to require a dental crown. Because they can be created from tooth-colored materials, inlays and onlays are often used to replace metal fillings for patients who desire a more natural looking smile. They are made of composite resin material, porcelain, or gold by a dental laboratory. Once completed, Dr. Rogowska will glue them to the tooth. An inlay sits in a hole inside the tooth and an onlay sits on top of the tooth to build up its shape.

Inlay/Onlay Treatment

Treatment involves isolating the tooth and removing any old fillings or damaged tooth structure under local anesthesia. Dr. Rogowska makes an impression of the tooth, then the inlay or onlay is created from porcelain, gold, or composite resin material. The inlay/onlay is cemented securely into place. Dr. Rogowska may make adjustments to ensure the tooth is comfortable to bite on.

Benefits of Dental Inlays and Onlays

In treating dental decay, inlays and onlays help to eliminate tooth sensitivity and eventual tooth loss. Inlays and onlays also offer the following benefits:

  • Made from tooth-colored material, inlays and onlays are virtually invisible.
  • Unlike metal fillings, inlays and onlays will not expand or contract in response to temperature changes caused by hot or cold foods diminishing the possibility of fracture.
  • Inlays and onlays requires less tooth reduction than metal fillings allowing Dr. Rogowska to conserve more natural tooth structure.
  • The durable material from which inlays and onlays are made helps them last up to 30 years, much longer than that of conventional amalgam fillings.
  • Inlays and onlays can replace silver fillings to create a healthier, more natural-looking smile.
  • By saving decayed teeth, inlays and onlays prevent the need for more extensive treatment later on.

Inlays and onlays usually take 2-3 appointments.

Contact us today to set up an appointment with Dr. Rogowska to get their opinion on your need for an inlay or onlay.

Don’t hesitate to contact us to discuss any aspect of your dental health – we don’t charge for giving advice!