Inlay or an Onlay?
At Seattle’s Best Smiles, we believe that nothing should come above the comfort, safety, and overall satisfaction of our valued patients. To this end, we have done away with yesterday’s conspicuous silver amalgam restorations; although traditional metal fillings did their jobs admirably for decades, restorative dentist Mark Caggiano is able to achieve superior results using high-quality composite materials that blend seamlessly into his patients’ smiles. In making damaged teeth whole again and protecting them from further damage, Dr. Caggiano may use tooth-colored fillings. However, if the missing portion of the tooth is too large to support a filling, yet not large enough to require a dental crown, an intermediate option may be called into play: an “indirect filling.”
There are two types of indirect fillings, inlays and onlays. Both are custom crafted from the finest materials to fit perfectly into the area once occupied by natural tooth matter; both can withstand the pressures of every day biting and chewing for years with proper oral hygiene habits and regular dental visits. Perhaps best of all, inlays and onlays are as aesthetically pleasing as they are functional.
Inlay and onlay candidates at our Seattle practice include most patients who require restorative dental work of any sort, including treatment for tooth decay. If you are a candidate for a traditional filling, then you are almost certainly a suitable candidate for an inlay or an onlay.
What Are Inlays And Onlays?
On the top surfaces of each of your teeth are between one and five raised parts called cusps. Depending on whether the damage to your tooth is contained within these cusps or extends to one or more of these cusps, either an inlay or an onlay will be used to restore the tooth.
An inlay is crafted to fit within the cusps of a damaged tooth. Once it has been bonded into place, it blends flawlessly into the tooth, restoring its function and appearance. An onlay differs only in that it covers at least one of the cusps of the tooth.
Are You A Good Candidate
For An Inlay Or Onlay?
As stated above, if you are a candidate for a conventional metal filling, you are probably also a candidate for an inlay or onlay. As long as there is enough remaining tooth structure to support the inlay or onlay, you are a good candidate for treatment. Of course, as with any dental treatment, you must be willing to follow all post-procedural instructions provided to you by Dr. Caggiano to ensure the longevity of your inlay or onlay.
If the damage to your tooth is too extensive to be treated with an inlay or onlay, then Dr. Caggiano may recommend that it be covered with a dental crown. Like inlays and onlays, dental crowns are crafted from the finest materials to ensure a completely natural appearance. However, unlike inlays and onlays, dental crowns are customized to replicate the entire visible surface area of the tooth.
Learn More About
Inlays And Onlays
To find out whether you are a suitable candidate for an inlay or an onlay, please contact Seattle’s Best Smiles today.