The dentist may decide instead of a filling an inlay or onlay is more suitable options to restore teeth damaged by decay or trauma.
Inlays and onlays are restorations made in a laboratory by a dental technician to restore shape and biting function of posterior (back) teeth.
An inlay fits into a tooth cavity like a filling would.
An onlay seats on the tooth to build up shape.
The Dentists prepares and takes moulds of the cavity in surgery.
The technician will make an inlay/onlay to fit the cavity using either porcelain, a composite material or gold depending on suitability.
The Dentist will cement the inlay/onlay into the cavity.
These restorations are larger than fillings but don’t cover the whole tooth like a crown.
As with a crown 2-3 appointments over a 2-4 week period are required for both inlays and onlays.