Porcelain Restorations—Crowns, Inlays, and Onlays
If you have a large cavity or a broken, damaged, weakened, or cracked tooth, you may need a custom-made restoration. These options include dental crowns, inlays, and onlays. The best choice for you depends on your needs, desires, and unique situation.
At Grand Lake Dental, Dr. Karl Jobst and his compassionate, caring team have the knowledge, skill, and gentle hands you want when it comes to restorative dentistry options. They will discuss your options and utilize your input to come up with the treatment plan best for you.
Also, if you suffer from fear or anxiety over going to the dentist, Dr. Jobst can offer you a comfortable, relaxed experience with dental sedation.
The Similarities of Crowns, Inlays, and Onlays
While crowns, inlays, and onlays can each be made of several different materials, such as composite resin, metal, stainless steel, or porcelain, the most commonly requested material is porcelain. This is because porcelain can be color-matched and mimics natural teeth in color, translucence, and feel. Moreover, porcelain is the most durable material.
Another similarity with these restorations is that they are custom-made for you. Each option requires more than one appointment for completion. We will prepare the tooth and take dental impressions to send to our respected, trusted lab for fabrication. Once your permanent restoration is ready, you will return so Dr. Jobst can cement it in place.
The result with porcelain is a strong, natural-looking restoration that is nearly invisible.
Crowns, inlays, and onlays can be used as a restoration for:
- Fractured or broken tooth
- Dental decay (cavity)
- Fractured or broken fillings
The restoration chosen will depend on the size, shape, and location of the damage or defect and the condition of the tooth.
The Differences Between Crowns, Inlays, and Onlays
While there are similarities between crowns, inlays, and onlays, there are some differences as well.
The two most alike restorations are inlays and onlays. These restorations are most commonly used for large cavities that are too big for a filling. However, some patients choose one of these options even when a filling would work because of the advantages they offer.
Fillings weaken a tooth, whereas inlays and onlays strengthen it. Also, inlays and onlays are more durable, whereas fillings tend to break easier. In addition, since they are custom-made based on an impression of your cavity or damage, they fit much better than a filling.
The difference between inlays and onlays is based on what part of the tooth needs restoring. An inlay is for a cavity that does not affect the cusps of your tooth.
Onlays, however, are the choice when the damage or decay affects one or more of the chewing cusps of a tooth. Because onlays cover more of the tooth, some people refer to them as partial crowns.
Dental crowns are tooth-shaped caps that cover the entire visible part of a natural tooth. They return a severely damaged, broken, or weakened tooth back to normal size, shape, and strength and allow for full function of the tooth. This is the necessary restoration after root canal therapy.
Crowns are also used when an entire tooth is missing, such as with a dental bridge or implant. In fact, an implant-supported crown is the best option for tooth replacement that most mimics a natural tooth.
In addition, dental crowns are frequently used in cosmetic dentistry to cover flaws in teeth, such as severe discoloration, chips, and oddly shaped or sized teeth.
The Process for Crowns, Inlays, and Onlays
Receiving a crown, inlay, or onlay begins with a consultation with Dr. Jobst. He will go over your medical history and perform a comprehensive oral examination that includes digital x-rays. He will discuss your treatment options with you and then, with your input, come up with a treatment plan.
Before he can repair the tooth, he must clean out all the decay and any damaged or old filling material. He will first numb the area with a local anesthetic and will then thoroughly clean the tooth. Once it is completely clean, he will gently prepare the tooth.
Preparation of the tooth depends on the amount of damage and choice of restoration. Inlays require the least preparation, whereas dental crowns require the most. Most often, preparation includes filing the tooth to allow room for the restoration, but a severely damaged tooth may require building up so a crown will fit.
We will then take dental impressions to send to our professional lab for the fabrication of your restoration.
Depending on the type of restoration and your situation, Dr. Jobst may place a temporary restoration while you await your permanent crown, inlay, or onlay.
Once Grand Lake Dental receives your permanent restoration from the lab, you will return for placement.
If you received a temporary, Dr. Jobst will remove it. He will clean the tooth and carefully place the restoration, making adjustments as needed to ensure a comfortable bite and proper fit. Once he is satisfied, he will cement the permanent restoration in place.
We will give you care instructions and encourage you to maintain routine dental visits to ensure the integrity of your restoration.
While porcelain restorations are quite durable and should last many years, they can be damaged and may need eventual replacement.
If you have a broken, damaged, or decayed tooth, do not delay treatment. Call Grand Lake Dental at (918) 787-5800 today to speak with one of our friendly, helpful team members. They can help you schedule an appointment or answer your questions regarding restorative dentistry or dental sedation options.