They may not be terms that you hear a lot, but dental inlays and onlays are both important procedures that can be used to restore a tooth and strengthen it after it’s been damaged or become decayed.
Inlays and onlays both work the same way, and both are made in the lab before being attached to the tooth with the use of a bonding material. Determining which procedure will be used is based on how much tooth has been damaged or decayed. Another way to understand the difference between the two is that an inlay fits in the cusps of the tooth while an onlay not only fits in the cusps, but wraps over the tooth.
The procedure for inlays and onlays is basically the same and will require two visits to your dentist unless he or she has a lab in the office.
You will be given local anesthesia, and the dentist will remove the necessary amount of damage or decay to restore the tooth. Next, a mold will be made of the tooth that needs to be restored and then sent to the lab. Then, a temporary inlay or onlay will be placed to protect the tooth until the permanent one is back from the lab. You’ll be able to resume your normal activity, and no one will notice that you’ve been to the dentist for a procedure.
Once the permanent inlay or onlay is back from the lab, you will return to the dentist office. First, the temporary will be taken off, and the tooth cleaned. Next, the permanent inlay or onlay will be placed to make sure it fits properly. Then, if it fits properly the inlay or onlay will be bonded to your tooth.
Your daily oral hygiene routine of brushing and flossing twice a day is all that is needed as aftercare to the inlay or onlay procedure, but you’ll still need to have regular checkups and teeth cleaning to assure optimum oral health.
Brooklin Village Dental Care has convenient evening and Saturday appointments now available. Make your appointment now!