These are extensive restorations manufactured outside the mouth. They replace large sections of a tooth that is damaged by decay, fracture or may even replace old fillings. Their manufacture material is a special resin or dental use porcelain.
Inlays are the restorations that occupy the space in the centre of the occlusal surface of the teeth without covering some of the peaks (cusps) of the tooth.
Onlays are the restorations including at least one or more peaks of the teeth (cusps).
The advantages of inlay and onlay restorations are:
- less time spent by the patient in the dental clinic than a proper extensive filling
- porcelain as fabrication material is better than the resin used for fillings.
- better aesthetics
- they are not discoloured over time
- greater mechanical resistance
- longer life compared with white fillings
Their disadvantages are:
- they require at least 2 visits by the patient in the dental clinic
- the cost is higher compared with a simple resin filling.