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Old 10-04-2014, 02:37 PM
5,441 posts, read 6,808,381 times
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If a person has the option of having either an onlay done, versus having a crown, which one is usually the better/safer/most durable default option? Personally as a dental patient, I have always thought that an onlay might be the best treatment of first resort for me, just because the procedure is less invasive and can save as much of the original tooth as possible. A crown on the other hand, is more invasive and takes away much more if not all of the original tooth. I am aware that in some cases, onlays can be a slightly more expensive treatment option vs. a crown done on the same tooth.

A family member insists that crowns are the best way to go, whereas I tend to err on the side of onlays, unless otherwise required. However, I found out kinda the hard way that when an onlay I had done some years ago got a crack in it and required a crown to be able to fix, that my dental insurance would not cover the cost of the corrective crown because a full 5 years had not yet elapsed between when the onlay was originally put in and adding the replacement crown. In this case, would it have just been better for me to go with a crown from the beginning, and skip the onlay entirely? Any advice anyone could please offer on this would be deeply appreciated, thanks!
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Old 10-08-2014, 11:38 AM
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Onlay is typically more conservative as some onlays do not replace all cusps of a tooth. The question that needs to be asked is if an onlay is done, how strong is the rest of that tooth that is not covered by the onlay and what risk factors does the patient have in causing a failure down the road (e.g. night time grinding, heavy bite, love for corn nuts, etc.)? Pricewise they are the same.
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