Candidates for Inlays and Onlays
Dr. Louis Buono is one of the leading dentists serving patients in the Garden City area. He offers some of the finest cosmetic and restorative dentistry services focused on enhancing smiles and overall health. This includes a comprehensive array of dental restorations for all sorts of situations.
Many patients have heard of inlays and onlays but are not sure what they are. Let's look at them in brief right now and consider how they can enhance your overall dental health.
About Inlays and Onlays
Inlays and onlays are dental restorations that are used to rebuild teeth that have been affected by major tooth damage or tooth decay. Similar to fillings, the inlays and onlays are able to restore the appearance and overall function of a person's teeth when they are in place.
How Inlays and Onlays Differ from Other Dental Restorations
Inlays and onlays may be considered a kind of intermediate type of restoration between traditional fillings and dental crowns. They are able to rebuild more of a tooth's structure than a filling—including the cusps (biting surfaces) of the teeth—but are not used to cap an entire tooth compromised by damage and decay as a dental crown is used.
General Candidates for Inlays and Onlays
Good candidates for inlays and onlays are people who have suffered from substantial tooth decay or a dental injury. They should have realistic expectations about the inlay and onlay process as well as the kind of inlay/onlay that they will receive. (More on this matter in a bit.) Patients who receive inlays and onlays should also be made aware that they will need to maintain good dental health going forward in the years ahead.
Important to Consider Potential of Dental Infection
In some cases, a tooth may be so damaged that the potential for a root canal infection is likely. In such matters, the use of a dental crown is typically more ideal than an inlay or an onlay. A dentist will carefully make this assessment during the consultation process.
Important to Consider the Ability to Save a Tooth
In addition to the above, it's also important for a dentist to consider the overall damage and decay that a tooth has sustained. In some instances, it may be a better idea to extract the tooth rather than use a dental restoration.
Metal restorations or tooth-colored restorations?
Inlays and onlays come in tooth-colored and metal versions.
In general, the tooth-colored inlays and onalys would be more ideal for the front teeth given how prominent they are. Metal inlays and onlays are often most ideal for molars and pre-molars given the amount of wear and tear these kinds of teeth need to endure.
The needs of each patient vary, of course, so this will be an important consideration during the consultation process.
Schedule a Consultation to Learn About Inlays and Onlays
For more information about inlays and onlays and how they can help you have a beautiful and healthy smile, be sure to to contact our cosmetic and restorative dentistry center today. Dr. Buono and the entire team at the practice look forward to your visit and helping you have the best smile possible.