Inlays or Onlays Armidale
Inlays and Onlays
The prime objective of tooth restoration is to give it back the natural shape and functionality so that the tooth can look good and function well.
Dental inlays and onlays are examples of indirect dental restorations because it is prepared in a laboratory by a dental technician and then fixed to the prepared tooth.
What Are Inlays and Onlays?
Inlays and onlays are conservative indirect restorations that can be made of composite resin, gold or ceramic. If the restoration is limited to the grooves present on a tooth, it is called an inlay. On the other hand, onlays cover the grooves and extend to the cusps of the tooth also. Hence, onlays are larger than inlays but smaller than dental crowns.
When Do We Need An Inlay or Onlay?
Your dentist will recommend you to go for an inlay in cases like:
- Previous fractured filling
- Broken tooth
- Dental cavity
- Large filling
What Are The Benefits of Inlays/Onlays?
The benefits of inlays and onlays include:
- Better resistance to fracture than a conventional dental filling
- Resistant to stains
- Enhance the appearance of the tooth
- They are more durable than regular fillings and can last up to 30 years depending upon the material chosen.
- The fit, shape and colour can be customised according to the individual needs.
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The materials used to prepare inlays and onlays include:
Long back gold was considered an excellent material for inlays and onlays owing to its strength and durability. With the introduction of tooth-coloured material, gold restorations became less popular. They still are one of the most recommended materials for areas that are not visible like the chewing surfaces of the upper back teeth.
- Extremely strong and durable
- High resistance to stains
- Very little chance of fracture
- Quite expensive
- Does not match the shade of the natural tooth
Ceramic or porcelain is available in different shades that can mimic the natural tooth. That’s why ceramic is used in the fabrication of dental crowns, inlays and onlays.
- Well known for its durability and strength
- Does not fracture easily like traditional fillings
- Very resistant to stains
- Mimic natural tooth colour and shade.
- Despite being rigid, ceramic restorations can fracture if the biting forces alter.
Composite resins can be moulded to form inlays and onlays to fill cavities that are too oversized for conventional fillings.
- More strength than traditional fillings
- Aesthetic as the shade can be matched with that of the natural teeth.
- Can get stained easily
- Lesser strength than gold restorations
- Less malleable when compared to porcelain or gold
What Are The Post-operative Instructions For Inlays/Onlays?
- Avoid sticky or chewy foods for at least a day after the placement of the inlay/onlay is the cement should be allowed sufficient time to bond the restoration properly to the tooth.
- You may experience mild sensitivity while having anything hot or cold. The sensitivity will dissipate in a week or two. Consult your dentist if it persists after the third week.
How To Take Care and Maintain Inlays/Onlays?
- To reduce the risk of plaque and bacterial buildup, practise oral hygiene measures like brushing for at least two minutes twice a day and flossing once daily.
- If the gaps between the teeth are bigger, you can use an interdental brush for efficient cleaning.
- Restriction of sugary treats is highly recommended. You will be asked to avoid highly acidic foods or beverages for the longevity of the restoration.
- Restorations need to be checked on a routine basis. Hence, visit your dentist once every six months to know the status of your inlays/onlays.
What Are The Alternatives For Inlays/Onlays?
- Conventional fillings – If the cavity is not large, it can be restored with the help of conventional filling materials like silver amalgam or composite resins.
- Dental crowns – In the case of large-sized cavities, a dental crown would be a better alternative restoration.
What Are The Risks Of Inlays/Onlays?
- Sensitivity – Deeper cavities may have sensitivity that does not dissipate even after a couple of weeks.
- Decay – Due to the difference in expansion and contraction of the restoration and the tooth, there are chances for the seal to break. This may cause the bacteria to enter the tooth and cause dental decay underneath the inlay/onlay.
- Allergic reaction – For those who are allergic to materials used for inlay/onlay preparation, it is better to think of an alternative treatment option.
Inlays & Onlays
Root Canal (Endodontics)
Each tooth of our dentition has a specific function and missing any one of them can pose various difficulties like trouble in chewing food and difficulty in speech. Missing teeth can alter the way you appear and can lower your self-esteem as well.
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