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When a large portion of a tooth’s biting surface is damaged, Dr. Sreter, the well known Jerusalem dentist, will often restore the tooth with an inlay or onlay.
What Are Inlays & Onlays?
Inlays and onlays are tiny sections of porcelain, gold, or composite resin which replace damaged areas of the teeth. The inlay is bonded or glued within the surface of the tooth. An onlay is a more substantial reconstruction, similar to the inlay, but extending over one or more of the outer surfaces of the teeth.
Gold has traditionally been the material of choice for inlays and onlays. In recent years, however, porcelain has become increasingly popular due to its strength and tooth-like color.
How Are They Placed On Teeth?
Inlays and onlays require one or two appointments to complete. During the first visit, the filling being replaced or the damaged part of the tooth is cleansed, and the tooth is prepared for the inlay or onlay. To ensure proper fit and bite, an impression of the tooth will be taken and sent to the dental laboratory for fabrication. Dr. Sreter will then apply a temporary sealant on the tooth and schedule the next appointment. If the inlay/onlay is fabricated in the computerized laboratory utilizing the CEREC technique it will be completed in one visit.
At the second appointment if needed, the temporary sealant is removed. Dr. Sreter will then adapt and correctly fit the inlay or onlay to your tooth. The inlay or onlay will be bonded with a strong resin and polished to a smooth finish.
Traditional fillings can compromise the strength of a natural tooth by up to 50 percent. As an alternative, since inlays and onlays are bonded directly onto the tooth using special high-strength resins, they can actually increase the strength of a tooth.. As a result, they can last from 10 to 30 years. In some cases where the damage to the tooth is not extensive enough to merit an entire crown, onlays can provide a very good alternative.