When patients experience minor tooth decay, a dental cavity may develop. Most of us have had a cavity at some point and most likely received a dental filling to repair the problem. However, when tooth decay is more severe or the problem is not addressed right away, a dental filling may not be enough to repair the tooth. At the Freehold cosmetic dentistry practice of Dennis Sternberg, DDS, inlays and onlays treatment is an option for more advanced areas of tooth decay.
Inlays and Onlays
Inlays and onlays are tooth-colored fabrications that are used to treat tooth decay. When tooth decay is present, it needs to be removed to restore a tooth’s health. If the decay was severe, the tooth will have lost too much material to remain strong or functional. An inlay or onlay can fill and cover the surface of the tooth to give it structural stability. Inlays or onlays may also be chosen as replacements for old metal fillings that need to be replaced for functional or aesthetic reasons.
Inlays and Onlays Treatment
The placement of inlays and onlays is fairly simple. Tooth decay needs to be removed to make room for the inlays or onlays, so the damaged tooth will be thoroughly cleaned. If the inlay or onlay is replacing an existing filling, that filling will be removed before the tooth is cleaned. Your inlay or onlay will be fabricated at a dental lab so that it can be customized for the fit and color of your tooth. It will usually take one to two weeks for the final restoration to be completed. A temporary filling can be placed to protect your tooth while we wait for the final restoration. When your inlay or onlay has been completed, you can return to our offices to have it placed. We will use strong dental resins to adhere the inlay or onlay to the surface of the tooth for a secure and comfortable fit.
Benefits of Inlays and Onlays
Our patients who are candidates for inlays and onlays treatment are happy to learn of the following benefits:
- Improved resistance to future tooth decay
- Minimal removal of tooth material
- A restoration that is undetectable to the naked eye
- Superior resistance to forces from biting and chewing
- Little to no pain during and after treatment
Not everyone qualifies for inlays and onlays treatment. Severe tooth decay may require more intensive reconstructive treatments. For our patients in Freehold, dental crowns can restore the function and integrity of a tooth that is too deteriorated for inlays and onlays treatment. Dr. Sternberg can discuss this treatment option with you further.
Schedule an Appointment
At the practice of Dennis Sternberg, DDS, in Freehold, we are experienced in general, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry. If you are interested in learning more about inlays and onlays treatment, or are just looking for a trusted family dentist, schedule an appointment with us. We look forward to working with you to give you a healthy and beautiful smile.