Your general or cosmetic dentist has many tools to give you the smile you want. A dental inlay is one of those tools.
“What is a Dental Inlay,” you ask?
It’s a type of implant that helps treat, strengthen and support teeth affected by cavities. Inlays are designed to fit exactly into the spaces left after a cavity has been drilled or “excavated”.
How is it different from a Dental Onlay?
You may have also heard the term “onlay”. Those are used to fill in cusps of the teeth.
NOTE: According to Wikipedia, a “cusp” is an occlusal or incisal eminence on a tooth. Canine teeth, otherwise known as cuspids, each possess a single cusp, while premolars, otherwise known as bicuspids, possess two each. Molars normally possess either four or five cusps. (That’s a lot of cusps!)
What is a Dental Inlay made of?
Inlays can be constructed from gold, porcelain or other metal alloys that are made to fit onto the particular tooth that is affected.
What are some benefits?
- You may already know what a full crown is (no, it’s not a hand in poker). A full crown covers an affected tooth completely. An inlay can be markedly less noticeable as it is seated inside of, and as part of, the natural tooth.
- It strongly supports the decayed tooth, but uses less material.
- A porcelain inlay gives a very natural appearance than would gold or other metal alloys.
- Dental inlays are also great for splits and cracks and can support tooth structure better than other fillings.
Who would be a good candidate for a Dental Inlay?
Inlays are only good for people with fully grown adult teeth. If teeth are not fully matured, there is a risk the tooth may become compromised, possibly growing around the inlay, causing jaw pain and other issues.
What does the procedure consist of?
This is cool! A plaster mold of the jawline and the affected teeth are taken by your practitioner. The mold then contains an actual imprint of the cavity itself! It is sent to a manufacturer that can then use the mold to create the filling, then checked for fit with your actual teeth. If the mold produced a successful fit, the inlay is then bonded to your teeth.
Here’s a quick video we uncovered to show the process. It’s a sample for a medical animation company, but it’ll do…
What results can I expect?
Excellent results! Again, inlays can provide a strengthened tooth structure that will be more impervious to further damage, and with porcelain, is less noticeable than most other solutions.
What are the risks?
Done properly, very little risks are present, but it is, of course, important to take great care of your teeth. You know what that means…
So that’s it for our description of inlays. Consult with your dentist for more info!
Read more: DentalFind.org