Large areas of tooth decay can seriously compromise your mouth. Beyond simply impairing your ability to chew food, it can also cause pain. If left unchecked, it invites more serious problems. If you notice a cavity on one of your teeth or you have a tooth that has recently developed a sensitivity issue, you should call your dentist as soon as possible.
Large areas of tooth decay on molars and some premolars can sometimes be repaired with fillings known as inlays and onlays. The only key difference between these two types of fillings is related to the size and location of the tooth decay.
Inlays are called for to repair a cavity on the biting surface of molar or premolar. Onlays are called for to repair larger an area of decay that extends from the biting surface to the side of the tooth.
If you have a tooth with a large area of decayed enamel or it has lost a large filling, there might not be enough healthy enamel left to mount a new filling. This might prompt your dentist to recommend replacing most of the enamel layer with a crown. This requires the dentist to remove most of the tooth enamel to create an abutment. A temporary crown is then cemented over top while a dental lab prepares a permanent crown.
If you have questions about what type of filling you might need, feel free to call us at 704-849-6700 to schedule an appointment.