Dental Tips Blog


Inlays and Onlays: A Conservative Approach to Enhanced Restorations

Posted in Crowns

If you’ve been told that your tooth can’t be repaired with a filling, it doesn’t automatically mean that the next phase of treatment is a crown! Dental inlays and onlays are unique, custom-fitted restorations that can preserve your tooth without the need for a full-coverage restoration like a gold or porcelain crown. In fact, inlays and onlays are often referred to as “three-quarter crowns” because they are capable of preserving such a large portion of the tooth.

Every inlay and onlay is custom-designed from an impression of your tooth, the same way a crown would be. The decay or damaged enamel is removed and prepared to support the bonding of the prosthesis, an impression is taken, and a temporary restoration is placed in the mouth. The impression is then sent off to a laboratory where a custom porcelain (or gold) restoration is made to fit the tooth. Within 2 weeks the permanent restoration is ready to be delivered. A short appointment is all that is needed, and the tooth is gently conditioned before the inlay or onlay is bonded into place. The end result looks like a whole tooth, without the need for a full coverage crown! Some dental offices are even equipped with on site equipment that is able to create a customized inlay or onlay that very same day, only requiring one treatment appointment.

One of the reasons inlays and onlays are a wonderful option, is because they allow your dentist to preserve as much healthy tooth enamel as possible. That means they fit better, look better, and help your teeth last longer!

Posted on behalf of Dr. Mitul Patel 


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