Sometimes a tooth suffers damage that is too extensive to be treated with a traditional filling but does not require a full crown. In these cases, the best option may be an inlay or an onlay.
Inlays and onlays are considered “indirect” fillings because they are fabricated outside of the mouth and then bonded to the tooth. Traditional or “direct” fillings, on the other hand, are applied directly to the cavity by the dentist. Getting an inlay or onlay is similar to receiving a crown, but more of the natural tooth structure is saved. Since our goal is to preserve as much of your natural tooth as possible, inlays and onlays will often be recommended when the tooth can be restored with this more conservative treatment.
Inlays and onlays which can be made using composite resin or porcelain creating a virtually unnoticeable restoration. Dental inlays are used to treat teeth that have damage on the chewing surface between the cusps or points of the tooth, while onlays are used to treat damage that includes one or more of the cusps.
Before placing an inlay or onlay, we will clean the tooth and remove the damaged portion. Next, we will take impressions or images of the tooth. Using this information, we will then create your restoration, and finally, bond it to the tooth.
To learn more about inlays, onlays and all types of natural-looking, effective dental restorations in San Diego, give us a call today at (619) 377-8577.