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Inlays & Onlays

Most patients are familiar with fillings and crowns. But what they are not as familiar with is the restorative procedure used on cavities that are too large for fillings, but too small for full crowns. In an effort to preserve more natural structure of your teeth, Dr. Calise might recommend onlays as a treatment option. They also work to replace outdated silver fillings. To find out more about this unique restoration call our Avalon, CA dental office at 310-510-0322.

What are Onlays?

If a tooth is too far gone for a filling, but not decayed enough for a crown, Dr. Calise might recommend an inlay or onlay. These are the mid-way point. While they are the same type of restoration, they cover different portions of the tooth. An inlay fills the space between cusps. An onlay covers one or more cusps, or rounded edges of the biting surface. Onlays might also be called “partial crowns.” Dental technicians craft the restoration off-site. In addition to treating cavities, Dr. Calise also uses onlays to replace unsightly amalgam fillings.

Benefits of Onlays and Inlays

There are a number of reasons why you might choose this restoration.

  • Mimic the natural color of your teeth
  • Require less invasive dental work
  • Are less prone to discoloration
  • Fit the exact size and shape of your teeth
  • Give you optimum functionality and protection
  • Retain more natural structure of your teeth compared to crowns
  • Promote dental strength and durability
  • Are as easy to care for as natural teeth

Procedure for Onlays

As with more extensive restorations, onlays often require at least two appointments. Here is what you can expect:

First Appointment: Tooth Preparation

First, the dentist will examine your mouth and talk about the best options. Dr. Calise will walk you through the procedure and help choose the best material for your onlay. Then the dentist clears away infected tissue, much the same as he would during preparation for a filling. Once the site is cleaned and prepped, the dentist will take an impression. He will send all the information to the dental lab where they will fabricate your onlay offsite. Then Dr. Calise places a temporary restoration to protect the tooth while you wait.

Second Appointment: Onlay Placement

After a couple of weeks, as soon as your onlay is complete, you will return to the office. The dentist removes the temporary restoration, examines the site, and fits the onlay in place. He will test the size and shape before permanently bonding it in place.

Care and Maintenance for Your Onlays

Just like your natural teeth, onlays will last longer if you make the effort to maintain proper oral hygiene. This means brushing twice and flossing at least once a day. It also means seeing Dr. Calise every six months for routine exams and cleanings. If you follow these steps then your onlay can last as many as 30 years or more.

Choosing Avalon Dental Clinic for Onlays

As a dental office in Avalon, CA we want to do all we can to improve your dental health. This is why we offer cutting edge procedures like inlays and onlays. Want to find out more, or schedule an appointment? Call us today at 310-510-0322 and set up an appointment with Dr. Calise.