What are dental inlays and onlays, and when are they likely to be used as treatment? Inlays and onlays are used as an effective and long-lasting restorative correction. Your dentist is likely to recommend dental inlays or onlays when a cavity is too big for fillings. If you want to learn more about the type of treatment your dentist may recommend in the case of cavities, keep reading.
An inlay or onlay goes onto the surface of a premolar or molar after a dentist in Weymouth, MA has drilled out and cleaned the decay from the tooth. They consist of porcelain or composite resin, which are made to be the same shade of your teeth so that they blend in with them. Gold inlays and onlays are sometimes also offered for people who don’t mind showing off their revitalized teeth.
An inlay sits within the cusps of the tooth to cover the crevices that have sustained damage by tooth decay. An onlay covers the affected cusps and any portion of the tooth that may have broken off due to decay or an accident. If a filling falls out of these larger teeth or they begin to show signs of wear, then your dentist may recommend replacing them with an inlay or onlay.
Amalgam fillings last for about 10 to 15 years, so if you’ve had yours since childhood, one of our dentists at Weymouth Dental Associates will examine it to see if it needs replacing. The edges around the filling can shrink or start to crumble, which puts the tooth at risk for a reoccurrence of tooth decay. To keep that from happening, our dentists in Weymouth, MA may recommend replacing it with an inlay or onlay.
Your dentist will measure the area that needs covering and take an impression of the tooth or teeth on which he or she is working. The impression then goes to the laboratory that makes the restorative piece. Once it’s ready and sent back to our offices, your dentist will remove the temporary filling and place the inlay or onlay in position, using an adhesive to cement it onto the tooth.
While these restorative dental pieces can last between 20 and 30 years, you need to take care of them by avoiding hard and extremely sticky foods so that your teeth will stay looking great. Give us a call now to schedule an appointment!