Indirect restorations are generally for cavities that are too big for direct fillings. The main benefit of these fillings is its strength owing to the material properties. Generally, ceramic or metal-reinforced ceramic is used.
Because the fillings are manufactured outside the mouth using sophisticated technique, the shape and fit of these fillings are far better than those of direct fillings. Conventionally, these fillings are done under at least two appointments:
The first appointment: the tooth is prepared to receive one of these fillings; impression is taken, which is then sent to a dental laboratory for the filling to be fabricated; the tooth is temporised.
The second appointment: the indirect filling is inserted.
Some of these fillings can be done on the same day chair-side using CEREC, saving you time coming back for a second visit. During the tooth preparation appointment, we would also scan your mouth. The filling is then designed and milled, which will be inserted on the same day.
Inlays and onlays
This is just like regular fillings, except that the fillings are fabricated outside the mouth. The fit, precision, and strength are superior.
As described above, these are generally for cavities too big for direct fillings. The bigger the cavities, the harder it is to sculpt the fillings to proper shape and fit directly in the mouth. In addition, the strength of the materials for direct filling (which is plastic materials) decreases with increasing size.
This involves preparing the tooth circumferentially. The crown is then cemented onto the prepared tooth, which can be likened to a cap onto a tooth.
This is generally for tooth that has lost much of its structure. Crowns provide all-around protection of the tooth. Some teeth that have been root-canal treated may require crowns to protect them in the long run.
This is one of the options to replace one or two missing teeth where the teeth adjacent to the missing teeth either would benefit from crowns or already have crowns. These adjacent teeth are called abutment teeth.
The procedure is just like that for crown, which involves preparing both abutment teeth for crowns. Instead of fabricating a single crown, two crowns are fabricated for these abutment teeth joined together with replacement teeth (pontics) for the space.