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Ceramic fillings, also known as inlays / onlays, are an optimal solution for larger tooth defects and are a more conservative alternative to full coverage dental crowns.


The restoration is called an “inlay” when the porcelain filling is bonded within the centre of a tooth. Conversely, when the extent of the damage requires the involvement of one or more cusps of the tooth and / or one side of the tooth or even the full occlusal surface, the restoration is referred to as “onlay / overlay”.


Nowadays requirements on filling materials range from durability, good adhesion to the tooth, functional stabilisation, biocompatibility, and tooth-like properties, for example in terms of hardness and thermal conductivity, to excellent aesthetic requirements.

In contrast to gold inlays, which can only be cemented in but unfortunately often lead to secondary caries, ceramic inlays / onlays are now firmly bonded to the tooth using a sophisticated adhesive technique. With this technique, the production of a mechanical retention is not necessary, so that healthy hard tooth substance can be preserved.

Unlike composite filling material, ceramics do not suffer from shrinkage.

Modern ceramic materials, which are manufactured in the dental laboratory, are also precisely matched to the tooth enamel in terms of their hardness. As a result, there is neither abrasion on the opposing tooth (due to filling materials that are too hard) nor increased abrasion of the inlays / onlays (due to filling materials that are too soft).


Advantages of ceramic fillings:

  • A long-lasting solution 

  • Natural aesthetics perfectly matched to the tooth enamel

  • Custom-fit modelling, including anatomically shaped occlusal surface

  • Less healthy tooth substance has to be sacrificed during preparation (compared to gold)

  • No more lost or broken fillings: avoiding frequent drilling and the loss of additional tooth substance

  • Excellent adhesion to the tooth (no falling out, no secondary caries under the inlay / onlay, no discoloration in the marginal area)

  • Same hardness as the enamel (no abrasion)

  • Very good durability

  • Stabilise the tooth

  • Ceramic is a highly biocompatible, aesthetically pleasing material for dental reconstructions


LASER for support:

Using the LASER in my Zahnarztpraxis Uetikon am See, can provide valuable services for deep cavity preparation
(cavity = hollow space): in deep cavities close to nerves, you can use the LASER to kill caries bacteria and you don't have to drill as deep.

The LASER irradiation of the prepared cavity leads to a micro-roughness that improves the adhesive effect of an inlay / onlay / overlay.

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