Inlays and onlays are two types of restorations that your dentist can suggest if you have a cavity in your tooth that needs to be filled. An inlay is a small filling that fits into the biting surface of a tooth while an onlay covers a larger area of the tooth and is better suited to bigger cavities. For many years, gold has been used to make inlays and onlays because it is a hard material and lasts for a long time. Nowadays, tooth-coloured porcelain is also used and gives the restored tooth a more natural look, which many patients prefer.
In some clinical situations, gold is still the best material for your tooth. We will discuss any treatment with you prior to commencing and highlight the various advantages and disadvantages.
Inlays and onlays can be made in a dental laboratory by a technician, with the help of impressions taken of your teeth. While these are being made, you will have a temporary inlay /onlay. When your inlay or onlay is ready your dentist will glue it into place using a special adhesive.
Thanks to advances in digital technology (called CAD/CAM) the inlay /onlay or crown made by the technician has a greater accuracy of fit meaning your dental work can last longer.
We will discuss the best way to care for your teeth and help you decide on your prefered treatment.