When more than half of the tooth’s biting surface is damaged your dentist may opt to use an inlay or onlay to restore the tooth’s shape and function. Inlays and onlays can be made of porcelain, gold, or composite resin (a tooth-coloured plastic material). An inlay, which is similar to a filling, is used inside the cusp tips of the tooth. An onlay is used when more substantial reconstruction is necessary. Onlays are similar to inlays but they extend over one or more of the cusps of the tooth.
Traditionally, gold has been the chosen material for inlays and onlays but porcelain has become increasingly popular due to its strength and colour, which can closer match the natural colour of your teeth.
Why Choose Inlays & Onlays
Inlays and onlays, which are bonded directly onto the tooth using high-strength resins, can potentially increase the strength of the tooth by up to 75 percent, opposed to traditional restoration fillings which could reduce a tooth’s strength by 50 percent. Inlays and onlays can last from 10 to 30 years with proper maintenance.