Are You a Candidate for Inlays?

When you have a cavity, you probably assume you’ll need a filling. However, that’s only one way to treat damage or decay in a permanent tooth.

Our team at South Bay Prosthodontics in Torrance, California, offers cutting-edge restorative treatments designed to repair damaged, broken, or missing teeth. If you have a cavity, you could be a candidate for a cosmetic treatment called an inlay.

What sets an inlay apart

Inlays serve a similar purpose to a traditional dental filling. They both repair tooth damage by filling a hole or gap in your tooth’s surface. But they’re very different treatments.

When you get a filling, your dentist applies tooth-colored material inside the hole in your tooth and hardens it with a special light. An inlay, on the other hand, comes pre-molded specifically to your tooth. 

To custom-make restoration, we take an impression of your tooth. Then, we send it to our in-house lab so our master craftsman — one of the best in Southern California — can fashion the inlay from porcelain or composite resin material. 

This process gives an inlay a barely visible appearance, making it a natural-looking cosmetic restoration.

When to consider an inlay

Unfortunately, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution to repair tooth decay or damage. For example, a filling can repair any part of a cracked, worn, or broken tooth. Sometimes, however, severe decay or weakness can require more extensive protection, like a crown that completely covers the visible portion of the tooth.

Inlays also serve a specific purpose. This restoration fits into the grooves of a tooth, but it doesn’t extend beyond the tips (cusps). If you have decay on that area, or the biting surface of your tooth, an onlay could provide better solutions. These custom-made treatments are similar to inlays, but they extend over the tips of a tooth.

We might recommend an inlay for a variety of reasons, such as when:

The only way to determine if an inlay is right for you is to schedule a comprehensive evaluation with one of our prosthodontists.

What to expect when getting an inlay

If we find that you're a good candidate for an inlay, the process is simple and straightforward.

During your first appointment, we prepare your tooth by removing any bacteria and decay. This process is painless because we apply a local anesthetic to numb your teeth and gums. And, if you have dental anxiety, we also offer sedation dentistry to keep you relaxed every step of the way.

After cleaning your tooth, we take an impression and send it to our in-house lab.

At your next visit, we use dental cement to secure your custom-made inlay into place, which usually takes less than 90 minutes.

Are you ready to see if you’re a good candidate for an inlay? Contact our office by calling 310-378-9261 to schedule an appointment today. 

You Might Also Enjoy...

When to Consider Partial Dentures

Most people think of dentures in terms of replacing all of your upper or lower teeth. However, you can also get a partial denture to restore a few missing teeth. So how do you know when partial dentures may be right for you?

Signs of a Dental Abscess

You may have heard the word “abscess” before. But do you know what it is and how to spot the signs of a problem? Take a few moments to learn more about this serious tooth infection.

5 Benefits of Veneers

Are you looking for ways to dramatically improve your smile? Veneers provide a quick and easy solution for numerous dental issues, whether you have one problem tooth or several. Take a few moments to learn more.

Sedation Dentistry: 3 Effective Methods

Having a fear or anxiety about visiting the dentist is a common problem, and it can cause many people to put off much needed dental care. But you don’t have to sacrifice your dental health any more, thanks to sedation dentistry.

How to Take Care of Your Dental Bridge

Getting a dental bridge takes only a few simple office visits, which makes it an easy solution for missing teeth. However, you still have to take the right steps to make sure the dental bridge lasts as long as possible.

Why You Shouldn’t Ignore a Broken Tooth

Whether you crack a tooth or it breaks off entirely, it’s essential to seek professional attention immediately. Even if the tooth doesn’t hurt, you should still consider it a dental emergency and contact your dentist for detailed instructions.