We Remove the Confusion about Fillings, Inlays & Onlays

Fillings, Inlays and Onlays have a similar purpose; to fill a gap either in the tooth/teeth or on top of the tooth/teeth. While you may be thinking, why are there three options to fix your teeth individually? Well, they all serve different purposes. For example, fillings primarily fill a gap caused by dental decay. Inlays, much like fillings are used to fill gaps. However, the difference is defined due to a larger opening caused by tooth injuries and fractures between the cusps. Then there are onlays. Once more, much like inlays, onlays serve the purpose of filling an even more significant gap in the teeth than inlays can achieve.

What’s the difference between a filling, onlay, and inlay?

A tooth filling requires material placement to fill a gap or hole in the tooth. In comparison, an inlay is used to restore teeth and is placed in the indented surface to repair a tooth with minor decay or a small fracture. An onlay is used to repair a tooth with more extensive decay or a larger filling and covers one of several tooth cusps. And here’s some great news! At Queen & Albert, we can provide same-day hybrid composite resin-ceramic inlays and onlays using CAD software. These are much more conservative than crowns, and are twice as strong as fillings, where applicable.

What about amalgam fillings?

The material used in inlays and onlays is the healthier option due to traditional amalgam fillings containing 50% mercury. Whilst amalgam is a strong, durable filling material used to restore decayed teeth or cavities, recognisable as unsightly silver attached to the teeth, these fillings leak small amounts of mercury vapour when you chew as well as place added pressure on your teeth. If you have existing amalgam fillings and are concerned about the toxicity of the mercury, we can replace them with our modern composite filling material.

What material is used for inlays and onlays?

Queen & Albert only uses 100% safe composite filling material. Due to modern technology and dental advancements, our composite filling material contains zero mercury. Check out the benefits.

  • The composite filling material can create a stronger bond with the natural tooth and is a highly-malleable product. Therefore it retains more of your natural tooth structure.
  • Unlike its metallic counterpart, our composite fillings do not expand or contract with temperature changes when you have hot or cold foods. This eliminates further fracturing of the filled tooth or the filling becoming loose and lost.
  • We use composite material in both restorative and cosmetic procedures.

Why would I choose an Inlay or Onlay?

Through innovative dental techniques, we use 100% safe composite filling material to restore teeth that –

  • have become decayed
  • require colour enhancement due to lifestyle and the environment discolouring teeth
  • an inlay or onlay can reshape uneven teeth

These cosmetic restorations enhance a natural-looking, beautiful smile.

It’s not just a Trend. It’s Practical and Precise!

The latest advancement in Dentistry is that many patients are opting to replace existing fillings with either an inlay or onlay to recapture their perfect smile. Why? Because inlays and onlays are created with precision in a dental laboratory from high-grade porcelain. However, the longevity of your composite restoration will depend on your oral care routine. Brushing twice daily and flossing once daily will ensure your teeth and gums remain healthy and your filling/inlay/onlay lasts for many years. We’d love to discuss your needs, so book in and we’ll go over your options.

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