At Twin Peaks Family & Cosmetic Dentistry, we can treat even the most severe cavities. Inlays and onlays are advanced dental fillings that help address significant damage to your teeth, beyond what a regular filling can provide. These advanced fillings are formed with a digital scan that provides us with an exact blueprint of what your teeth need.
The Difference Between Inlays and Onlays
Inlays and onlays are types of restorative dentistry procedures used to repair damaged teeth, but they address different kinds of tooth damage. Inlays are used when the damage is within the cusps or the bumpy structures on the biting surface of a tooth. They’re much like a small filling.
On the other hand, onlays are used when the damage extends beyond one or more cusps. They’re more extensive than inlays and sometimes called “partial crowns.” Both preserve as much of the healthy tooth as possible and are a less aggressive alternative to a full dental crown.
Inlays address the innermost part of your tooth if it’s got an infection or cavity. Inlays are the sweet spot between dental fillings and crowns. This tool provides the strength regular fillings can’t while being less invasive than a dental crown.
What Is the Difference Between Inlays and Fillings?
Dental inlays and fillings are both used to help address dental damage. For each product, Dr. Butler will first take out the dental decay. This leaves a small hole where the damage is cleared. After that, he will either use an inlay or a filling.
Dental inlays are solid structures that are built to fit right into where the hole is placed. Dr. Butler will use this more concrete option for teeth that have little structural support.
Dental fillings quite literally fill the hole with liquid composite material, rather than placing a prosthetic in your mouth. This option doesn’t provide as much support for the tooth but still takes care of the cavity.
How Long Do Inlays Last?
Dental inlays last as long as your teeth, dental care, and diet allow them to. On average, dental inlays last around 20–30 years, which is three times the rate of an average filling.
Onlays are used when the cusp, or top, of your tooth needs specific attention. We use onlays when the structures of your teeth are intact but the chewing surfaces are decaying or wearing away.
How Long Do Onlays Last?
The lifespan of dental onlays also depends on circumstance and dental care, but they usually last less long than inlays. On average, onlays usually last up to 10 years.
Process of Installing Onlays and Inlays
The process of installing dental onlays is relatively simple. Typically, the whole process usually only takes a couple of visits! Here’s how it goes:
- Cleaning: Dr. Butler will first numb your mouth with a local anesthetic and remove any tooth decay or damage from your tooth.
- Creating the Impression: Dr. Butler will then take a digital 3D impression, provide a temporary product if needed, and create a precise inlay or onlay using our dental technology.
- Placement and Bonding: Once the inlay or onlay is ready, we will clean your teeth, fit the restoration, and bond the onlay to your tooth!
- Recovery: You may feel some discomfort for a few days as your teeth adjust to the procedure. After a few days at most, you should be back to normal!
Caring For Inlays and Onlays
Properly handling inlays and onlays is the same as taking care of normal teeth. However, it is also important to be careful while eating bulky foods or drinking too many acidic products. With particular care, your onlays and inlays can last many years to come!
Reverse Damage with Inlays and Onlays!
Protect yourself from the damage of dental plaque with dental inlays and overlays! Call Twin Peaks Family & Cosmetic Dentistry in Longmont, Colorado, to see how this treatment can help you!