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By: | Tags: , | Comments: 0 | March 21st, 2016

Woman getting a dental exam

Sometimes, a tooth will require a partial or complete cover to protect its sensitive inner portions. This could be because your tooth has a fracture. Dental onlays and inlays offer options to provide a seamless protective cover that isn’t obstructive and is also strong and long lasting. Their tight fit, durability and ability to curb tooth decay makes them as functional as they are esthetic.

The Difference between Onlays and Inlays

Dental inlays sit between your tooth’s ridges and biting surface and can be made from different materials, ranging from porcelain to hardened resin.
Onlays, on the other hand, cover a greater part of the tooth. They can cover more than one cusp and fill bigger dental cavities. They provide an effective option between inlays and crowns.

When Are Dental Onlays Appropriate?

Dental onlays are a perfect solution to partial dental fractures, decays or cavities. A good dental onlay will only cover the damaged section of the tooth and restore a solid biting surface. This coupled with the fact that they seal off the tooth decay and nerves makes them a better approach to treating low to middle class tooth damages.

How Are Onlays Different From Crowns?

Dental onlays differ from crowns in that they preserve more if not all of the remaining tooth structure. This helps the tooth retain much of its strength. Onlays are also preferable to large fillings, which may cause the tooth to eventually crack and break. With proper dental care onlays can last up to 30 years. Preserving the strength of your teeth is crucial to maintaining your ability to bite and chew food.

The Dental Onlay Procedure

A dental onlay procedure will require two dental visits. The first visit will involve preparing the damaged tooth and creating a mold that will be used to fabricate the onlay. The dentist will then fit a temporary filling that will protect your tooth as you wait for the actual onlay. On the second visit, the dentist will remove the temporary filling and install the final onlay during your second visit. Your dentist will always explain the procedure and help you choose the right material to use in fabricating the onlay.

Dental Onlays Advantages:

Natural Looking

The dentist can give your onlay a natural finish that resembles your remaining teeth, giving you a lively, natural smile. The porcelain or composite resins are durable and will not discolor over time. This will keep your overlay as white as your tooth for longer.

Behave Like Natural Teeth

A good porcelain or composite resin onlay will not only fit around your tooth better but also feel natural. This will make things like chewing and brushing more natural and comfortable.

Gentle on the Other Teeth

Their non-obstructive installation and use of calcium-based material makes them more or less similar to the natural tooth crowns. This will minimize on their impact on your healthy teeth and jaw. Their superb fit and durable material will not only fuse with the existing tooth perfectly but also give you room to evenly use your teeth when masticating without the fear of damage or pain.

Protect Existing Tooth Damage

A good dental onlay on a cleaned and treated tooth will halt further tooth decay. This makes it a perfect solution to dental cavities and breakages that could easily develop into tooth decay. Combine this with the fact that dental onlays are easy to clean and you get a perfect tooth restoration that will not affect your oral hygiene in any way.

Reinforce the tooth structure

Normally, partial tooth decay or chipping leaves the remaining cusps weaker and vulnerable. The onlay fills up the gap to retain the tooth’s initial structural strength. This will keep your teeth strong for regular use.

The team at Central Avenue Dental has vast experience treating damaged and/or cracked teeth. Book an appointment today for quality, personalized dental care.

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