If your damaged teeth need more extensive treatment than a filling but are not quite damaged enough for a crown, our dentist can provide you with dental inlays and onlays (also known as partial crowns) to restore the health, function, and appearance of the tooth. To learn more about inlays and onlays in Cary, North Carolina, and to make your appointment with Dr. Stephen Coker, please call Parkway Dental at 919-380-9622.
The cusp is the pointed or rounded projection on the chewing surface of the tooth. Molars typically have four cusps. Bicuspids, also called pre-molars, typically have two cusps. When we refer to crowns, onlays, and inlays, we are referring to whether we need to restore the cusp of the tooth, and if so, whether it is all of the cusps or some of the cusps. When a tooth has been severely weakened or fractured, we will usually place a crown, which covers all of the cusps.
When a tooth has one or more cusps that are weakened or fractured but other cusps that are still strong, we can elect to do an onlay. An onlay can cover one or more cusps while retaining some of the tooth above the gum line.
When the cusps of the tooth are all healthy and structurally sound, we can elect to restore the surrounding structure but leave the cusps intact. This is called an inlay. Inlays are typically placed inside the tooth itself to fill the spaces left by tooth decay or replace a wall of the tooth.
For more information about dental inlays and onlays, contact our office today.