Dental inlays and onlays
Like fillings, inlays and onlays are used to restore a tooth’s form and function following damage. The difference being that, whereas a standard filling is applied directly into/onto your tooth and this is set hard in your mouth, inlays and onlays are custom-made in the laboratory and then cemented in place.
When does a tooth need an inlay or onlay?
- Inlays and onlays are used when the tooth structure is not firm enough to place a regular filling. Inlays and onlays are a stronger restoration and should last longer.
- If a tooth doesn’t need a full crown yet, which is a more destructive option, the dentist will prescribe an inlay or onlay instead.
The difference between an inlay/onlay
The difference between inlays and onlays is that an inlay is placed inside a cavity on your tooth whilst an onlay replaces the cusp(s) (tips) of your tooth.
Materials that can be used:
Gold, composite, zirconia or porcelain.
Your dentist will explain the advantages and advise on which one is best for your tooth.