Inlays & Onlays

Inlays and onlays are dental treatments used to support simple fillings in premolars or molars when the tooth is damaged or decayed. They are a type of restoration that is used when the damage or decay is too extensive to be treated with a filling, but not severe enough to require a full dental crown. Inlays are used to repair damage that is contained within the cusps (points) of the teeth. Onlays are used when the damage extends beyond the cusps and covers more of the surface area of the tooth. Inlays and onlays are typically made of porcelain (ceramic), composite resin, or gold, improving the patient’s aesthetic value.


Inlays and onlays are often used as an alternative to traditional fillings, as they provide a more long-lasting and natural-looking solution. They are also less invasive than dental crowns, as they require less removal of the natural tooth structure. The process for getting an inlay or onlay typically involves two appointments with dentist. During the first appointment, the dentist will prepare the tooth by removing any decay or damage and taking an impression of the tooth. The impression is sent to a dental laboratory where the inlay or onlay is custom-made to fit your tooth precisely. A temporary restoration is placed on the tooth to protect it until your next appointment. At your second appointment, the temporary restoration is removed, and the custom-made inlay or onlay is placed on the tooth. The restoration is then bonded to the tooth with a strong dental adhesive. dentist will make any necessary adjustments to ensure a comfortable and proper fit.


Ceramic inlays last longer than composite fillings. Inlays and onlays are more durable and long-lasting, and they can be custom-made to fit your tooth precisely, providing a more comfortable and natural-looking restoration. They also require less removal of healthy tooth structure compared to dental crowns, making them a more conservative treatment option. House of Dontics offers high-quality inlays and onlays that are customized to fit patients’ teeth perfectly and restore oral health and function.

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Base material

The base material used in inlays and onlays can be porcelain(ceramic), composite resin, or gold.



An adhesive is used to bond the inlay or onlay to the tooth. This adhesive is usually a resin that is cured with a special light.



An impression of the prepared tooth is taken so that the dental lab can create a custom-made inlay or onlay that will fit perfectly in the prepared space.


Temporary Restoration

While the custom restoration is being created, a temporary restoration is placed over the tooth to protect it.

DTX Studio Implant


Once the permanent inlay or onlay is ready, it is bonded to the tooth using a special dental adhesive. The dentist will carefully check the fit and color of the restoration before cementing it into place.



Finally, the dentist will polish the inlay or onlay to ensure that it looks and feels natural in the patient's mouth. The restoration will be checked again for proper fit and comfort before the patient is sent home.


Digital impressions

Advanced technology is used to take digital impressions of the tooth, which eliminates the need for traditional putty impressions. This results in more accurate impressions and a better-fitting restoration.


CAD/CAM technology

Computer-aided design and manufacturing (CAD/CAM) technology is used to create the inlays and onlays. The restoration is designed on a computer, and then a milling machine creates the final restoration from a block of ceramic or composite material.

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  • Avoid eating or drinking anything 8 hours before the surgery.
  • Notify the dentist if you are taking any medications or have any health conditions.
  • Wear comfortable clothing and avoid wearing any jewelry or makeup.
  • Remove contact lenses prior to the appointment.
  • Brush and floss your teeth thoroughly before the surgery to remove any plaque or debris from your teeth.
  • Avoid smoking or drinking alcohol for at least 24 hours before the surgery, as these can delay the healing process.
  • Attend all follow-up appointments to ensure proper healing and maintenance of the fillings.
  • Relax and stay calm during the procedure, as stress and anxiety can make the experience more difficult for both you and dentist.
  • Avoid eating or drinking for at least one hour after the procedure.
  • Try to chew on the opposite side of the mouth from the filled tooth for the first 24 hours.
  • Avoid hard, crunchy, or sticky foods that could damage the filling for the first 24 hours.
  • Brush and floss gently around the filled tooth, being careful not to dislodge the filling.
  • Take over-the-counter pain medication if necessary, as directed by a dentist.
  • Avoid smoking or using tobacco products, as they can slow down the healing process.
  • Be mindful of any changes in the color, sensitivity, or pain of the filled tooth and report them to the dentist.
  • Attend all follow-up appointments with the dentist to ensure the filling is healing properly.
  • Practice good oral hygiene habits, including regular brushing, flossing, and dental check-ups, to maintain the health of your teeth and prevent further damage or decay.

Understanding Root Causes of Dental Issues

tooth damage

Tooth decay

One of the most common causes of inlays and onlays is tooth decay, which can lead to the need for a dental restoration.

Gum disease


Teeth can be damaged due to trauma, such as a fall or accident. Inlays and onlays can be used to restore the damaged tooth to its original shape and size.

Congenital absence

Fractured or broken teeth

Teeth can become fractured or broken due to injury, trauma, or wear and tear over time. Inlays and onlays can be used to repair these damaged teeth.


Large cavities

When a cavity is too large to be filled with a standard dental filling, an inlay or onlay may be needed to restore the tooth.

failed root canal

Root canal therapy

After a root canal, a tooth may need to be strengthened with an inlay or onlay to prevent further damage.


Aesthetic reasons

Inlays and onlays can also be used for cosmetic purposes to improve the appearance of a tooth that is discolored or misshapen.

tooth injurery

Wear and tear

Teeth can become worn down over time due to grinding, clenching, or other habits. Inlays and onlays can be used to restore damaged teeth.



Teeth can become weakened or damaged as we age, making inlays and onlays a common treatment option for older adults.

Our Treatment Process


The dentist examines the tooth to determine if an inlay or onlay is needed.


Local anesthesia is administered to numb the tooth and surrounding area.

Tooth preparation

The tooth is prepared by removing any decay or damage, and the surface is cleaned.


An impression of the tooth is taken using dental putty or a digital scanner.

Temporary restoration

A temporary restoration is placed on the tooth to protect it until the permanent inlay or onlay is ready.

Temporary restoration

A temporary restoration will be placed on your tooth while the permanent inlay or onlay is being made.

Frequently Asked Questions

an inlay is a type of dental restoration that is used to repair a small area of a tooth, while an onlay is used to cover a larger area of the tooth, extending to one or more cusps. In other words, onlays are similar to inlays but cover a larger portion of the tooth.

They are used when a tooth has mild to moderate decay or damage and a filling isn’t sufficient, but a full crown isn’t necessary.

Inlays and onlays can be made from a variety of materials, including porcelain, gold, or composite resin. They are typically custom-made in a dental lab to fit the specific tooth that needs to be repaired.

Inlays and onlays can last up to 30 years or more with proper care and maintenance. They are typically more durable than fillings and can provide long-lasting protection to the affected tooth.

No, getting an inlay or onlay is not typically a painful procedure. The dentist will use local anesthesia to numb the area before the procedure, and you should not feel any pain during the procedure itself.

The process of getting an inlay or onlay typically takes two appointments. At the first appointment, the dentist will prepare the affected tooth and take impressions. At the second appointment, the inlay or onlay will be bonded to the tooth.

Yes, inlays and onlays can be replaced if they become worn or damaged over time. dentist can evaluate the condition of your inlay or onlay and recommend whether it needs to be replaced.

Inlays and onlays are generally safe and well-tolerated, but some people may experience sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures for a few days after the procedure.

Inlays and onlays do not require any special care, but it is important to maintain good oral hygiene to ensure their longevity.

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