If you know or understand even a little bit about how a filling works, then you’ll get how porcelain inlays and onlays work. They’re similar in that they help bring form and function back to a damaged smile. When providing restorative dentistry in Chicago, we sometimes turn to porcelain inlays and onlays when we meet a patient with a tooth or teeth that have extensive cavities and decay. Sometimes you have a tooth that’s damaged to the point where a dental crown is necessary to protect your remaining tooth structure — which is always one of our biggest goals — to keep your natural teeth healthy enough to last a lifetime. This might be an instance when we would recommend a porcelain inlay or onlay to fix your smile. But what’s the difference between an inlay and an only?
Onlays – Porcelain onlays do just as their name suggests, fitting on or over the top of the cusps of your teeth, generally molars. Your cusps are what we call the unique ridges of your teeth.
Inlays – Also, like their name says, porcelain inlays fit perfectly into your tooth’s cusps, filling the space that’s now clean and free from decay.
These types of dental restorations allow us to easily and precisely build-up and restore damaged teeth to their natural form, color, and function.