An inlay restoration is a custom filling made of composite material, gold, or tooth-colored porcelain. Porcelain inlays are popular because they resemble your natural tooth. Inlays can be used to repair teeth that have large defective fillings or have been damaged by decay or trauma.
Inlays are an ideal alternative to conventional silver and composite fillings. Also, they are often preferred to crowns because less tooth structure is removed to prepare for the inlays.
A porcelain inlay is made by a professional dental laboratory and is permanently cemented into the tooth by your dentist.
As with most dental restorations, inlays are not always permanent and may someday require replacement. They are highly durable and, with proper oral hygiene and regular office visits, will last many years, giving you a beautiful long lasting smile.
Reasons for inlay restorations:
- Fractured fillings.
- Large fillings.
- Broken or fractured teeth.
- Cosmetic enhancement.
- Decayed teeth.
What does getting an inlay involve?
An inlay procedure usually requires two appointments.
At the first appointment your dentist will be taking several highly accurate impressions (molds) that will be used to create your custom inlay and a temporary restoration.
After numbing the tooth, your dentist will remove any decay and/or old filling materials. The space is then thoroughly cleaned and prepared, shaping the surface to properly fit its inlay. A temporary filling is installed to protect the tooth while your inlay is made by a dental lab.
On the second appointment your new inlay will be carefully and precisely cemented into place. A few adjustments can be necessary to ensure a proper fit and that your bite is comfortable.
Regular home care and checkups will add to the long life of your new durable inlay.