What Are Onlays and Crowns?

 

We recently explored the differences between fillings and inlays, two common restorative procedures for minor damage, such as when you have a small cavity. But what can be done if you have a bigger issue? Fortunately, there are additional options and that’s when onlays and crowns come into play.

 

Onlays

Very similar to an inlay, an onlay is when the tooth needs treatment on one or more of the cusps. Also known as a partial crown, an onlay is a more conservative approach than a crown for repairing damage. It involves removing the broken or decayed portion of the tooth and replacing it with a custom-made restoration. Onlays are ideal when the damage is limited to the chewing surface and one or more cusps (high points) of the tooth. They are often made from porcelain or even Gold, restoring strength to the tooth.

 

Crowns

A dental crown, on the other hand, is a full-coverage restoration that encases the entire tooth. It is used when the tooth is severely damaged or weakened, such as after a root canal treatment or due to extensive decay or fractures. Crowns can be made from various materials, including porcelain fused to metal, all-ceramic, zirconia, or gold alloy. The choice depends on factors such as aesthetics, durability, and the location of the tooth.

 

When Do You Need an Onlay?

 

  1. Tooth Decay: When decay affects only a portion of the tooth, an onlay can effectively repair and restore its function while still preserving much of the tooth. This approach is less invasive and helps avoid unnecessary removal of healthy tooth structure.

  2. Fractured Cusps: If one or more cusps of a tooth are fractured, an onlay can be placed to protect and strengthen the tooth. This prevents further damage and promotes long-term oral health.

  3. Large Fillings: When a large filling weakens the tooth structure, an onlay can replace the filling and provide additional strength and support.

 

When Do You Need a Crown?

 

  1. Extensive Decay: If decay has spread throughout the tooth, compromising its structural integrity, a crown is necessary to restore its strength and protect it from further damage.

  2. Root Canal Treatment: After a root canal procedure, the tooth becomes more vulnerable and may require a crown to reinforce and protect it.

  3. Cracked or Fractured Tooth: When a tooth is severely cracked or fractured, a crown is needed to hold the pieces together and prevent further damage or loss of the tooth.

 

Both onlays and crowns are effective dental restorations that can help preserve your natural teeth and maintain your oral health. The decision between an onlay and a crown depends on the extent of damage, location, and specific needs of your tooth. At Downtown Franklin Family Dentistry, we’ll present you with the best options for treatment and help you make the best decisions to preserve your teeth and healthy smile for a lifetime.

 

Prevention is always the best way to ensure your oral health. Early intervention and regular dental check-ups are key to preventing the need for extensive restorative procedures and minimizing your need for a crown or onlay. Call us today to schedule your next check-up so we can treat minor issues before they become major ones.

What to Expect When Getting a Dental Implant

June 14, 2024

Dental implants are a state-of-the-art solution for replacing missing teeth and restoring...

Read More

Radiography Made Safer: How We’re Protecting Your Health During Dental Visits

May 22, 2024

At Downtown Franklin Family Dentistry, your safety and well-being are paramount in...

Read More

The Importance of Regular Professional Teeth Cleaning: How Often Should You Go?

May 14, 2024

Maintaining good oral hygiene goes beyond just brushing and flossing at home....

Read More

Unlock the Fountain of Youth for Your Smile: Tips to Prevent Aging Teeth

April 25, 2024

As we age, we often focus on maintaining our youthful appearance, but...

Read More

What You Need to Know About Oral Cancer

April 4, 2024

April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month, a time dedicated to highlighting a...

Read More

What to Expect When You’re Expecting a Crown or Filling

March 21, 2024

At Downtown Franklin Family Dentistry, we understand dental procedures can sometimes feel...

Read More

Your Guide to Unveiling the Beauty of Dental Veneers

February 22, 2024

Have you ever admired someone’s flawless smile and wondered how they achieved...

Read More

Say Goodbye to Sensitivity: Effective Solutions for Sensitive Teeth

February 19, 2024

Are you tired of wincing in pain every time you indulge in...

Read More

Understanding Gum Disease & How to Prevent Periodontal Problems

February 5, 2024

Gum disease, also known as gingivitis and periodontal disease, is a condition...

Read More

Primescan Technology Gives Our Patients the Best Dental Care

January 25, 2024

Downtown Franklin Family Dentistry is proud to introduce the latest addition to...

Read More

Composite vs. Amalgam: Understanding Dental Fillings

January 11, 2024

When it comes to dental fillings, many patients have questions about the...

Read More

Dental Items Make Great Stocking Stuffers

December 14, 2023

When it comes to holiday gift-giving, we often think of big-ticket items....

Read More

Your First Visit: What to Expect

December 12, 2023

Welcome to Downtown Franklin Family Dentistry, where we believe in providing comprehensive...

Read More

Fluoride: The Secret Ingredient for Strong and Healthy Teeth

November 30, 2023

As a dentist, I am often asked about the secret to healthy...

Read More

Choosing the Best Dental Insurance and the Right Plan for you

November 9, 2023

Dental visit anxiety is a common issue that affects people of all...

Read More