Inlay and onlay

Dental Restorations: Inlays & Onlays in Las Cruces, NM

Inlays and onlays are dental restorations that are more extensive than dental fillings but less so than caps and crowns. They are typically formed in a dental lab and are made of gold, porcelain or resin depending on the patient’s needs and aesthetic goals. An inlay refers to a restoration that is formed to fit the center of a tooth, whereas an onlay refers to a restoration that encompasses at least, one cusp of the tooth. Both inlays and onlays are bonded to the surface of damaged teeth and matched to the color of the surrounding teeth.

Did you know…
that inlays and onlays can serve as alternative treatments to dental crowns when you have a broken or damaged tooth? When fillings are not enough to adequately repair a tooth, an inlay or onlay can be custom-created to fit securely onto the tooth’s surface. Depending on the materials used, the restoration can be created to appear natural and will have the same function of an organic tooth. Inlays and onlays have extremely high success rates and because they are custom made for each patient, most last longer than traditional fillings.

Frequently Asked Questions

Am I a candidate for an inlay or onlay?

You could be a candidate for an inlay or onlay in if you have moderate tooth damage or decay and are in search of an alternative restoration option to a crown or cap. Inlays and onlays are meant to look like part of your natural tooth, so they’re less noticeable than amalgam fillings.

If you’re a candidate for a dental filling, you’re likely also a candidate for an inlay or onlay. They’re not suitable for every type of tooth damage, such as cases where most of your natural tooth is missing, so your dentist will perform an examination to determine if an inlay or onlay is the best solution for you.

What should I expect when I get my inlay or onlay restoration?

Your inlay or onlay restoration will be completed over two dental appointments. First, your tooth will be prepared for treatment, and an impression will be taken to serve as a mold for your new restoration. 

You may receive a temporary restoration to keep your tooth safe while your permanent restoration is created.

Once completed, you’ll return to have the temporary restoration removed and the permanent one bonded to the surface of the teeth. This doesn’t take long and you’ll soon be able to smile knowing your restoration looks completely natural.

Do I need to follow any post-treatment care guidelines?

Special care needs to be given to your teeth while temporary restorations are in place. It’s important to avoid sticky or hard foods that could cause significant damage to temporaries. Your dentist will give you detailed care instructions to follow.

Once you receive your permanent inlay or onlay, you can resume normal eating, brushing and flossing habits. It’s important to keep up with regular oral hygiene practices to keep your teeth safe and help your restoration to last as long as possible. Regular dental visits also ensure your restoration remains clean and healthy along with the rest of your smile.