Dental Inlay & Onlay: When Is One Recommended Over the Other

Dental Inlay & Onlay: When Is One Recommended Over the Other

Feb 02, 2022

When looking for treatment alternatives for your smile, have you come across inlays and onlays near you? Although the terms are not very common among people, they are not new terms in dentistry. Dental inlays and onlays have been used severally to restore patients’ teeth regarding strength and structure.

What Are Onlays and Inlays?

They are types of dental fillings used in restorative dentistry to repair and restore teeth. They feature tooth-colored porcelain materials, which is why in many cases, onlays and inlays are used as alternatives to the standards amalgam fillings. More to it, dentists in Rancho Cucamonga may use onlays and Inlays as alternatives to composite fillings and dental crowns, depending on the patient’s needs.

​Difference Between Inlays & Onlays

Inlays are different from onlays based on how they are made. Ideally, inlays are smaller in size than onlays. Inlays typically fill the tooth inside the cusps. On the other hand, onlays fill more than just the cavity hole and area in between the cusps of your teeth. An onlay will fill the tooth enough to cover the cusps of teeth. In a sense, onlays can be viewed as partial dental crowns, covering only the chewing surface of your tooth.

​Situations Calling for Inlays Or Onlays

Onlays and inlays restore teeth in similar ways as with other types of dental fillings. It means that your dentist can use inlays and onlays to repair cracked and chipped teeth as well as decayed teeth. The most common usage regards treating tooth cavities, similar to other tooth fillings.

Still, onlays and inlays treat different dental problems than conventional dental fillings. Typically, our dentists at Talent Dental will use inlays when the size of the tooth cavity is too big to benefit from a typical tooth filling. Using a filling in such a case would mean that it would be too large, requiring extra support from another dental appliance. Instead of that, the dentist will recommend an inlay.

On the other hand, onlays are used when the size of filling needed is too big but not big enough to merit getting a dental crown. Therefore, instead of crowning your entire tooth, the dentist will use an onlay to protect the top part of the tooth by covering the cusps.

​Benefits of Inlays and Onlays Procedure

As you prepare for your scheduled dental appointment to get inlays or onlays, consider the following benefits they present to your smile:

  1. Preserving more of your natural tooth – Onlays preserve more of your natural tooth than the amount of preparation done before receiving dental crowns. The dentist will only prepare a portion of the top part of your tooth to ready your mouth for an onlay.
  2. The porcelain material does not shrink – One worrying factor about traditional dental fillings is that they shrink with temperature changes. Examples are silver and composite fillings. However, porcelain does not expand or contract. It further protects and preserves your natural teeth from cracking due to the expansion and contraction of dental materials used.
  3. Durability – The porcelain materials that make inlays and onlays are last longer than other materials. It can serve you for up to 20 years or longer with proper care.
  4. Make teeth cleaning easier – The porcelain material covers your tooth surface, making teeth cleaning easier. You no longer have to worry about having a hard time getting rid of food residues or plaque on the deep pits and fissures of your teeth.
  5. They are stain-resistant – Onlays and inlays resist stains and can remain as white as when you first got them for up to 30 years or longer with proper care.

Perfect fit – The procedure for getting inlays and onlays differ from dental fillings. Ideally, the dentist will prepare your tooth, then take its impression. The dentist will use the dental impression to create your inlay or onlay, as is the procedure for a dental crown. The result, therefore, is a perfect and secure fit, better than is the case with a dental filling.

Call Now Book Now