Dental Tips Blog


The Filling-Crown Hybrid

Posted in Crowns

What are stronger than fillings but smaller than crowns?

Onlays and inlays!

Loosely classified as a combination between fillings and crowns, an onlay or inlay is often the ideal restorative choice. Just what are these restorations and how are they placed?

Puzzle Pieces

Onlays and inlays are restorations that are created outside of the mouth. After the fractured or decayed part of your tooth is removed, records of the prepared tooth are taken to design the restoration from. Then, it is cemented into the tooth just like a piece in a puzzle. Each restoration is created to custom-fit a specific tooth.

What do they look like?

The restoration can resemble the rest of your natural tooth, if it is made from a material such as ceramic. No one has to know it’s there! The piece will be designed to replace a portion of your tooth’s outer layer. Each restoration is designed to line up exactly with your tooth’s original shape. This means that it will reflect the same pattern of cusps and valleys on the tooth’s chewing surface.

What is the difference between onlays and inlays?

Inlays are placed where only a part of the “valley” of the chewing surface needs to be replaced.

Onlays are designed to cover the edge or cusps, or “mountains,” on the tooth in addition to the grooved spots.

Benefits of Onlays and Inlays

Inlays and onlays:

  • Are stronger than large fillings
  • Are more conservative than crowns
  • Give your tooth strength to bite and chew

Ask your dentist about restorative options available in your area. Your next dental restoration could be a beautiful new inlay or onlay!

Posted on behalf of:
Mitzi Morris, DMD, PC
1295 Hembree Rd B202
Roswell, GA 30076
(770) 475-6767

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