Inlays and onlays are sometimes referred to as partial crowns. These partial crowns are indicated when there is still substantial healthy enamel but too much missing tooth structure to place a filling. An inlay or onlay replaces the missing tooth structure, is extremely strong and is cemented or bonded to the remaining tooth structure. Inlays and onlays are fabricated of either ceramic or gold.
What happens during an onlay/inlay procedure?
The general procedure for the fabrication of an inlay or onlay is similar to that of a crown. Planning is essential. Although an inlay or onlay requires less material to fabricate, the preparation of the tooth require more time and effort as we are trying to preserve as much healthy tooth structure as possible. The fabrication of an inlay/onlay requires at least two appointments.
The procedure begins with the removal of the decay . The tooth is then evaluated to determine whether an inlay, onlay or other type of partial crown is needed. The preparation is refined and an impression is taken so that the laboratory has a model on which to fabricate the restoration. A temporary restoration is placed for your comfort and to maintain the position of the tooth while the restoration is fabricated. Should the temporary restoration come loose, you should contact our office to have it recemented. Failure to do so could result in the restoration not fitting correctly. At the second appointment, the restoration is adjusted, polished and delivered. We will make every effort to ensure that the new restoration feels exactly like one of your natural teeth.