One of the most confused cosmetic dental procedures is the differences between porcelain inlays and onlays. A porcelain inlay restoration is a custom made filling that is created using a composite material which is generally tooth colored porcelain, but sometimes gold. Te porcelain inlays are more popular than gold because they actually resemble your true teeth color. The inlay itself is created by a professional dental laboratory from a mold that is created by the dentist. A dental inlay is generally used to perform conservative cosmetic restorations on teeth which have been damaged due to decay or trauma. They are a good alternative to conventional fillings in larger areas, and are considered more conservative than a full crown due to the fact that less tooth preparation is necessary. Dental restorations of all kinds are not always permanent and may require replacement over time, however typically they will create a more beautiful smile and last many years.

Inlay restorations are used for:

  • Broken teeth.
  • Cosmetic dental enhancement.
  • Decaying teeth.
  • Broken fillings.
  • Very large fillings.

What happens when you get a porcelain inlay?

The procedure is typically done in two appointments, the first of which consists of the dentist making accurate impressions of the teeth and then numbing the area and preparing the tooth to receive the inlay by removing decay, old fillings and any other material necessary. While the dentist is waiting for the dental lab to return the inlay, a temporary filling is used to keep further decay from effecting the tooth. On the second visit the inlay is adhered permanently to the tooth, and the bite is adjusted by the dentist. The same care and maintenance as your regular teeth will be suggested in order to have your new inlay last many years.