Inlays & Onlays
If this is yet another dental term that you are not familiar with don’t be alarmed, and inlay or an onlay is really nothing more than a filling. They are a durable restorative filling dealing with a cavity, just a little better than the other fillings available. To help define the inlay and onlay we’ll first look at the dental problems, then we’ll look at the dental options as a solution and then we’ll conclude with the benefits of choosing an inlay or onlay.
Reasons for an Inlay & Onlay
You are having your six month oral examination at Smile Eden Prairie and in spite of reasonably good oral hygiene you have developed a cavity. A cavity is when bacteria carrying plaque sits on the tooth and the acid eats away at the enamel. If left unattended the bacterial will infect the pulp in the center of the tooth and just like that you are in pain begging for a root canal. So our Doctors confirm a cavity and that cavity needs to be addressed. You can cover that cavity, once the bacteria is removed, with a traditional filling or you can decide to treat it with either an inlay or onlay. Your discussion with the staff at Smile Eden Prairie will take you through your options. A traditional composite resin filling is your first choice. The filling material is the color of your tooth and provides good durability and resistance to fracturing. This material can also be used in your front or back teeth. The second option is a dental amalgam which is silver in color and is a combination of silver, tin, mercury and copper. These fillings have been used for generations and are also very durable and more affordable. The most durable option of the fillings is that of gold. Used for over a 1,000 years gold is the most expensive option and of course not natural looking.
Benefits of Inlays & Onlas
An inlay or onlay can be more permanent and have a longer life expectancy than a filling. A filling is susceptible to literally falling out over the years and will need to be replaced. An inlay or onlay, due to the initial fabrication and the cement bonding does a far better job keeping any and all bacteria out through the life of the inlay or onlay. Usually though both of these solutions are used for larger cavities or perimeter damage that a filling cannot adequately protect. The inlays or onlays, fabricated in porcelain or ceramic, can match the color and shade of your tooth perfectly, so this is an aesthetic benefit. They are also more durable than fillings unless you insist on chewing ice every day. An inlay or onlay, because of the lab fabrication, can actually strengthen a tooth. Often times a metal filling can weaken a tooth over time.
Inlay & Onlay Costs
Most insurance companies will not pay for an inlay or onlay. They will categorize the procedure as a filling so the additional costs, which include the impression, the lab work with the fabrication, and the second visit will be charged to you the patient.
Proper Care of Your Inlay & Onlay
Since this material is porcelain or ceramic your inlay or onlay will stain just like your natural teeth. This is an excellent time to discuss your eating and drinking habits with the staff at Smile Eden Prairie. You may have to monitor the amount of cola, tea, coffee or red wine you consume. If nothing else you should be diligent about brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time. Make sure your toothbrush is less than six months old. You will also want to floss between your teeth to remove the sticky plaque that the toothbrush cannot reach. Of course, you should see the staff at Smile Eden Prairie twice a year for an ongoing evaluation. By maintaining a consistent schedule they are able to monitor your teeth and gums for any changes in condition. They will also introduce x-rays to keep track of what is going on below the gum line and then send you home with a professional teeth cleaning. Your dentist is your friend. They value your smile more than you do. They understand the importance of your smile when it comes to your self-confidence and self-esteem both personally and professionally. If you have fillings discuss replacing them with an inlay or onlay today.
Contact Smile Eden Prairie
Having inlays and onlays placed can significantly impact and improve the lives of those with damaged teeth. Scheduling an appointment for inlays and onlays is the first step towards being confident in your smile once again. We are here to help you begin your journey towards the perfect smile! Please contact us to set up an appointment for inlays and onlays at (952) 941-9829. At Smile Eden Prairie, we are passionate about your smile and committed to providing you with the quality care you need!