At Ford Dental Group, we specialize in several restorative treatments designed to improve the structure, function, and aesthetics of a damaged tooth. While we still implement traditional restorations like fillings and dental crowns, we also offer inlays and onlays. Inlays and onlays, also known as indirect fillings, are conservative alternatives to dental crowns. We may recommend an indirect filling if you have decay too extensive for a traditional filling, but not extensive enough to require a dental crown.
An indirect filling is considered an inlay if the restoration is bonded directly to the center of the occlusal (bite) surface. An indirect filling is considered an onlay if the restoration extends beyond one or more of the occlusal cusps. Onlays are an excellent choice for decay located in between the tight spaces between your teeth.
The Inlay And Onlay Process
If you are in need of restoration, Dr. Jonathan Ford will determine whether or not an indirect filling is right for you. After we establish an appropriate treatment plan, we can schedule the procedure. The procedure is typically broken down into two appointments.
During your first appointment, we will prepare the damaged tooth. This may include the removal of old fillings or decayed tooth material. In some cases, we will administer a local anesthetic to eliminate any pain or discomfort. Once the tooth is prepared, we will make an impression. This impression will be sent to our dental laboratory. At the lab, our technicians will use the impression to fabricate your indirect filling.
The fabrication process may take several weeks to complete. In the meantime, we may give you a temporary filling to protect the vulnerable areas of the tooth. Once your restoration is complete, we can schedule your final appointment.
During your final appointment, we will remove the provisional filling and check the fit of your new restoration. We may need to make some minor adjustments to achieve the perfect fit. Dr. Jonathan Ford will check the margins and your bite to ensure there are no problems related to your restoration. Once we are satisfied, the indirect filling will be permanently bonded to the tooth.
Benefits Of Inlays And Onlays
Inlays and onlays are extremely stable restorations that seldom fail. Many of our patients choose indirect fillings because of their numerous benefits, some of which include:
- Superior Comfort: A conservative approach to restorations allows us to preserve as much of the healthy tooth material as possible. This leads to a superior fit and greater comfort.
- Superior Strength and Structure: In most cases, an inlay or onlay will improve the structure of a damaged tooth, especially if you have tight space fulfillment. By preserving more of your natural enamel, we ensure your tooth and restoration will last longer.
- Superior Esthetics: Inlays and onlays are typically fabricated using porcelain or some other type of ceramic. Ceramic is so effective because it exhibits the same light-reflecting properties of natural enamel. It can also be shaped and textured to match the appearance of enamel. Esthetically speaking, this makes ceramic the next best thing to your natural teeth.
- Easy Maintenance: Inlays and onlays are easy to care for and maintain. To increase the longevity of your restoration, be sure to implement an excellent oral hygiene regimen.
Schedule Your Appointment
If you think you may need restorative treatment, call (714) 409-6161, and schedule your appointment today!