Porcelain Inlays

Porcelain is a common material in tooth restoration and reconstruction for a couple of reasons — it is durable and similar in color to natural teeth. At Chew Dental Group in Fremont, CA, we strive to give our patients a natural smile with porcelain inlays. 

What Are Porcelain Inlays?

A porcelain inlay is a single, solid piece of porcelain that replaces the damaged or decayed portion of a tooth that gets drilled out during the procedure. Unlike crowns, they don’t replace and cover the tooth, but inlays can fix a larger area than a traditional composite filling.

How Are Inlays Applied?

Getting a porcelain inlay requires two separate appointments: one for preparing the tooth and taking a mold, and another for installing the custom-made inlay. Here's how the full process works: 

  • Drilling Out The Issue - The process begins by drilling out the broken or decaying portion of the tooth to make sure the problem is completely resolved after the inlay is applied.

  • Mold Created - To ensure a perfectly fitting inlay, a bite impression is taken and used to create a mold that becomes the model for the inlay. The model is sent off to a lab where the custom inlay is created. 

  • Temporary Filling - A temporary filling is inserted into the negative space created by drilling out the damaged area of the tooth. This keeps the tooth protected until the inlay is manufactured and sent to the dental office to be applied. 

  • Application - Once received, the inlay is applied into the drilled out portion of the tooth with dental cement so it remains in place. We'll make any necessary adjustments to ensure you have a natural, comfortable bite. 

What Is The Difference Between An Inlay And A Filling?

Inlays are typically reserved for teeth that are too damaged or decayed for a filling to treat. Also, fillings start as a liquid resin-based mixture while an inlay is a pre-made, solid piece constructed from a mold.

Because inlays are made in an off-site lab, the process usually takes two visits while fillings can be completed in one visit.

How Long Do Porcelain Inlays Last?

With proper care, a porcelain inlay can last nearly 20 years compared to fillings, which typically don’t last longer than 10. If they are neglected, patients can expect a lifespan of about five years.

After about 24 hours of receiving a porcelain inlay, patients can resume normal eating habits, but should still stay away from eating any food that's sticky or requires crunching. 

Patients should avoid eating the following:

  • Suckers/Lollipops

  • Gummy Candy

  • Jawbreakers

  • Ice

How Much Do Porcelain Inlays Cost?

The price for porcelain inlays varies depending on how many teeth need to be repaired and the size of the damaged or decayed area. Typically, inlays are covered by dental insurance as it's part of a dental restoration procedure

After evaluation from Dr. Chew, a more refined price range is determined, where costs will be broken down into what your dental insurance covers.

Porcelain Inlays In Fremont, CA

Have you recently noticed increased tooth sensitivity when eating or drinking hot or cold things? If so, you might have a cracked tooth or cavity that needs restoration with a porcelain inlay. Don’t let your problem get worse — contact us or make an appointment today!