sample onlay
- Dental

Porcelain Onlay: A Popular Oral Restoration For Your Teeth

Porcelain Onlays are one of the widely admired cosmetic treatments for teeth since they resemble the natural tooth. Dental restorations compose various ways that dentists use to replace or restore a missing tooth or parts of the tooth structure. Ensure that you will choose a professional to do dental restorations as suggested by this dentist near Seymour.

Definition of onlay

Under oral restorations, dentists use onlays in repairing decayed, chipped, cracked, or damaged teeth. An onlay is huge compared to inlays. It repairs the cavity located at the central part of the chewing surface as well as the tooth cusps.

Onlays are created using composite materials, gold, or porcelain that exactly resembles the color of the teeth. Porcelain Onlays are popular nowadays. They have been rising in longevity just like the gold. Professional dental laboratories produce porcelain onlays. The dentists will then permanently cement these onlays on your tooth.

Onlays are also referred to as partial crowns. They are a great and ideal alternative to crowns or caps. When using an onlay, the dentists will only remove lesser tooth structure as its preparation.
Onlays are commonly applied at the chewing surface of the tooth. On the other hand, let us discuss the advantages of using porcelain in your onlays.

activity inside a dental laboratory

Preparation of Onlays

You will be visiting your dentist twice if your dentist will use onlays for your restoration treatment. On the first visit, your dentist will be performing the preparation of onlays, while the second visit will be the fitting of the permanent onlay.

During the first visit, your dentist will prepare your tooth. Injection of local anesthesia will follow to numb the tooth. Afterward, the dentist will remove the cavity. In case that the cavity is large, it might take more of your time.

Furthermore, the dentist will make an impression on your tooth. This time, your dentist will make a temporary onlay on your tooth. This will only serve as protection while you wait until the permanent onlay becomes available. The dentist will send the impression to the dental laboratory. It might take 7-10 days before completion.

Your next visit will then be for the removal of the temporary onlay and placement of the permanent onlay. On the second visit, your dentist will confirm if the onlay fits you perfectly before permanently bonding it to your tooth.

Special care for your temporary onlay

During the waiting period for your permanent onlay to arrive, you have to take extra care of your temporary onlay. During this time, you should avoid flossing around the tooth with temporary onlay. Additionally, it would be better not to chew anything hard or sticky to keep the temporary onlay intact.

In case that the temporary onlay falls off, it will leave the affected tooth unprotected. In effect, it will expose the tooth nerves that will cause pain to you.



Advantages of porcelain onlays

As mentioned, there are several materials to choose from for your oral restoration. One of those is porcelain. Porcelain onlays are indirect fillings that can restore a tooth’s function and structure. In like manner, it will look and feel like your natural tooth only.

These onlays have their advantages to why you should choose it as the material.

  1. An aesthetically appealing type of restoration.
  2. Helps strengthen the teeth.
  3. Replace old or damaged fillings.
  4. Easy to maintain.
  5. Designed to last longer (depending on how you do no. 4).
  6. Porcelain material is extremely durable.
  7. Restores the chewing surface or bite.
  8. Helps less wear and tear on your bite.


Common disadvantages

Porcelain onlays have an excellent performance in restoring the chewing surface and other surfaces of the teeth. However, there are a few minor disadvantages that you may usually encounter afterward.

  1. Need to be re-cemented or replaced due to normal wear.
  2. In case that you have a fractured tooth, it would be better to use a porcelain crown rather than an onlay.
  3. It is not advisable for patients with high stages of dental caries.
  4. The dentist might also have reconsideration if you have conservative cavities.
  5. Patients with occlusal interferences might also be limited to using onlays.
  6. Having young teeth might also limit the option of using onlays.
  7. In this type of restoration, you will have to spend two visits to complete the treatment.
  8. Incurs higher cost.

Other alternatives aside from porcelain onlays

Several oral restoration options are available. The dentist will recommend to you what is best for your tooth concern.

  1. Sticking to onlays, instead of porcelain, your dentist can use gold. However, there is a possibility that gold will be a little awkward in visible areas.
  2. Composite fillings are another option to serve as an alternative. This type of restoration takes a little time to complete. Furthermore, the cost is quite effective initially. On the negative side, it is less durable as well as might require a sooner replacement. In the long run, you will incur more costs.
  3. A porcelain crown is also an alternative. However, in this option, the dentist will remove a larger part of the healthy tooth structure to fit the crown.
a lady with a bright smile


In modern dentistry, there has been great growth in addressing different types of dental issues. Cosmetically, different restoration options are available depending on what the patient’s teeth require. The costs of these restorations may vary according to how it will take and who will perform.

Moreover, modern dentistry is still continuously improving its processes and alternatives that every patient can enjoy. All things considered; they still want what is best for their patients. From the teeth’s facial surfaces deep down to the chewing surfaces, dentists want to maintain them all as healthy as possible. Even the portions beneath the teeth that are beyond what eyes can see are not exempted.

On balance, we still need to keep our good oral hygiene to achieve a complete, healthy set of teeth. It is not the sole responsibility of the dentists to maintain good oral health.

Consequently, dentists are here to support us toward a common goal, and that is for us to have the best dental health condition.

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