Indirect and Direct Dental Restoration Options

Indirect and Direct Dental Restoration Options

When a patient has structural damage to a tooth or missing teeth, Dental restorations procedures are necessary to help restore the natural structure and function of the teeth. There are two types of dental restorations, indirect and direct.

Indirect dental restoration

Indirect dental restorations are complex procedures with fabrications that are done outside of the mouth and in a lab. They usually require multiple office visits to complete. These are especially helpful for more severe dental issues. The following are common indirect restorations:
Crowns are tooth-shaped caps, typically made of porcelain or metal, that cover a tooth. They are used to restore and improve broken or weakened teeth.
Implants are used to repair missing teeth. An artificial tooth root is placed in the jaw bone, and after a period of a few months, false teeth are attached that are made to closely match the look of the natural teeth.
Veneers are customized porcelain shells that are used to cover a tooth. They are often used to fix teeth that have damaged and worn enamel, as well as misshapen teeth. These are created to match the color of the other teeth.
Inlays and onlays
Inlays and onlays are needed for teeth that have more extensive damage that a simple filling cannot fix but not enough damage to require a crown. These are usually made of resin or gold. The difference between an inlay and onlay is what the filling covers. Inlays fit in the area between the cusps of a tooth, while onlays cover the cusps on one or more teeth.
Bridges are typically used for missing teeth. This treatment involves capping the natural teeth on both sides of the missing tooth and fabricating a bridge with an artificial tooth in the middle to fit over them.

Direct dental restoration

Direct dental restorations are single procedures that can be done in one dental office visit, with any work and fabrications done directly in the mouth. These are examples of direct types of restorations:
A filling is the most common direct dental restoration and is used to repair a decayed tooth. Fillings are typically made from one of three materials: composite resin, silver amalgam or glass ionomer cement. Composite resin fillings can be matched to the tooth’s actual color. Silver amalgam fillings are comprised of a mixture of the metals silver, copper, tin and mercury. Glass ionomer fillings, normally used on baby teeth, are more delicate and contain fluoride compounds that help prevent decay.
Dental bonding
Dental bonding is often used to correct gaps, repair chipped teeth and fix staining that occurs in between teeth. This treatment involves the placement of a customized tooth-colored material, typically comprised of composite resin, over the tooth.


There are numerous dental procedures that are either direct or indirect restorations. Regardless of which treatment options are used, patients can have a restored and functional smile to be proud of.
Request an appointment here: or call Peoria Family Dentistry at 623-552-4665 for an appointment in our Peoria office.
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8253 W Thunderbird Road #101, Peoria, AZ 85381

Phone: (623) 552-4665

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