What are Porcelain Onlays? At Southview we use the CEREC machine to mill porcelain onlays for teeth. These are used to restore teeth where cavities or other tooth damage has compromised too much of the tooth for a traditional filling to effectively fix the tooth. Therefore, it’s a great way to preserve as much of the patient’s existing healthy tooth enamel as possible, which is ideal for maintaining a strong, long-lasting and natural mouth.
This patient had a cavity that caused the rest of tooth to break around it. For her case, Dr. Michael chose to use porcelain because it is much stronger and lasts longer than traditional fillings.
First, Dr. Micheal used the intraoral camera to scan the tooth to input to the CEREC system. The scan ensures the onlay is a perfect fit to the existing tooth. This is the best way to ensure the shape matches and looks and feels natural to the patient’s bite.
Next, the CEREC software created the image of what the tooth should look like, then milled it to the ideal specifications.
After the tooth is prepared, it was attached to the tooth.
Before – Tooth Decay
The Porcelain Onlay
After – the onlay is placed
This entire process from scan to attachment takes exactly ONE office visit. That’s it!
Wear and Care
Porcelain onlays milled by the CEREC are strong enough to withstand normal wear and tear like teeth grinding and aren’t sensitive to temperature. Also, because they are milled by the CEREC, the porcelain is so smooth that you don’t have to worry about bacteria or food particles getting stuck to the tooth.
While that is true, we aren’t giving this patient, or any patient, a free pass from flossing! Protecting ALL of your teeth is the best way to prevent needing fillings to begin with.