Are you getting set to get a dental onlay, or are you thinking about doing this procedure? Onlays can be an effective way to repair damaged teeth and restore the appearance and health of a tooth. You are probably curious about how this process works, including the treatment time. Your dentist can help you understand…
3 Tips for Dental Inlay Aftercare
A dental inlay is a partial crown that is usually recommended when a tooth has been moderately damaged by decay. Such damage may be too much to repair with fillings, but covering it with a crown might be excessive.
The acids made by oral bacteria cause tooth decay. These microorganisms feast on the sugars in food particles in the mouth. They convert these sugars into acids that damage tooth structures. Tooth decay is the leading reason people head to a dentist for treatment.
3 Ways to take care of your dental inlay
A dental inlay is customized to fit the grooves of the patient’s tooth, and it does not extend beyond its cusps. The inlay allows the dentist to avoid removing significant amounts of enamel to make space for the restoration.
Some of the benefits of restoring a damaged tooth with an inlay include:
- The inlay is more resistant to fractures than a dental filling
- The inlay improves the appearance of the treated tooth
- An inlay can prevent the cavity in a tooth from expanding or causing fractures for up to 30 years
Inlays do not require any special care, and there is no significant recovery process after getting them. Some patients might feel slight discomfort after getting an inlay, but that usually goes away within a few days.
Good oral hygiene is all inlays require to keep them in top condition. Good oral hygiene includes:
- Brushing twice a day: This helps remove food particles in the mouth and acids made by oral bacteria. It also gets rid of plaque, a sticky film that contains bacteria and the acids they make
- Flossing once daily: Flossing once each day helps to keep interdental spaces clean
- Use mouthwash: Mouthwash helps to clean the areas that flossing and brushing miss. It also helps to reduce bacteria in the mouth and re-mineralize teeth
The dental inlay process
A dentist might recommend getting an inlay after examining the decay on a patient’s teeth. The process often starts with the dentist numbing the tooth with a local anesthetic and removing decayed material from it.
Once the cavity has been hollowed out, the dentist will take an impression of the patient’s tooth by having them bite down on a mold. The mold is sent to a dental lab where technicians make restorations like inlays. It takes about two weeks for the restoration to get back to the dentist. The dentist typically applies a temporary filling to protect the patient’s tooth while they wait for their restoration. The filling protects the tooth from sensitivity to hot and cold things. It also prevents acids in the mouth from expanding the cavity further.
The temporary filling is removed during a second appointment, and the customized inlay is cemented into place. The patient’s tooth should be restored at this point.
Put tooth decay behind you
A dental inlay might be what you need to fix your decayed tooth. Give us a call or stop by our Sterling dental clinic to set up an appointment.
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Dental Restorations in Sterling, VA.
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