For more extensive cavities or decay affecting multiple areas of a tooth, an inlay or onlay may offer the most effective restorative solution.
The distinction between an inlay and an onlay lies in the specific area of the tooth's anatomy being restored. Inlays are utilized for cavities located within the grooves or pits and fissures of the tooth's biting surface, while onlays are employed when the decay extends to involve the tooth cusps. Both serve to restore areas where tooth decay has occurred and compromise the tooth structure.
Inlays and onlays can be fabricated using either cast gold alloy or tooth-colored ceramic or porcelain materials. Before the procedure, a model of the patient's natural tooth is created to ensure that the restoration closely resembles the shape and function of the original tooth.
The restoration's shape and fit can be confirmed before cementing or bonding it in place, ensuring both precision and durability for the inlay or onlay.