What is a dental inlay?

Often used as an alternative to regular dental fillings, inlays are a bespoke dental restoration method used to fill cavities and gaps in teeth. Many people favour these over regular fillings, but in cases where the teeth are particularly weak or suffering from large areas of decay, this may be the only suitable treatment.

Each inlay is created in our Synergy Dental labs and replaces part of a tooth lost through decay or damage, creating a strong tooth substitute that is able to withstand use both at the front and the back of the mouth. Failed fillings can also be protected within this treatment, preventing a fracture and irreparable damage.

What are the treatment benefits?

Although inlays are similar to fillings, they provide a more accurate restoration of your teeth thanks to digital design technology used in the Synergy Dental lab. Not only does this improve the overall feel of the tooth, but it also helps prevent damage and further decay, providing a longer lasting solution.

The bespoke nature of the procedure also provides a more natural look to that of regular fillings. Designed to fit your tooth perfectly, the inlay is extremely discreet and blends in with the colour and shape of surrounding teeth.

The treatment process

During a consultation with your dentist, the outer surface of the remaining tooth will be prepared before an impression of the tooth is taken. This will then be sent to the lab where a bespoke product will be constructed. While construction takes place, the dentist will fit a temporary solution to prevent further decay or damage. The finished prouct will then be fitted to the tooth once it has arrived at your local clinic.

What is the cost?

The cost per unit depends on the material chosen by the patient. Synergy Dental provides four options for material including porcelain, gold alloy, composite and zirconia, all of which incur a different cost.

Material options

There are four materials most commonly used:

• Porcelain – Ideal for those desiring a natural look, this material requires a little more preparation and can abrade opposing teeth, but it does provide cosmetic appeal
• Gold – Gold alloys do not appear natural but do provide long-term stability and strength, even on bite surfaces at the back of the mouth
• Composite – Composite inlays are constructed from a resin and provide natural colouring and a lifespan similar to that of porcelain, without the abrasive qualities
• Zirconia – This natural look ceramic provides cosmetic benefits while remaining extremely strong and long-lasting.

By Dr Zuber Bagasi