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Inlays & Onlays
Inlays and Onlays

You can think of a dental inlay or onlay as being midway between a filling and a crown. Inlays or onlays are used when not enough tooth structure remains to support a filling, but the tooth is not so severely damaged that it needs a crown.


An inlay is similar to a filling, but it lies within the cusps (bumps) on the chewing surface of your tooth. An onlay is more extensive than an inlay and covers one or more cusps.


Inlays or onlays can be made of gold, composite resin (plastic) or ceramics. They can last for decades. However, how long they last depends on the material used, the teeth involved, the forces of chewing and how well the patient maintains them with good oral hygiene and regular visits to a dentist.

What Are Inlays & Onlays?

Inlays and onlays are both restorations that are used to repair a damaged tooth (usually a back tooth / molar) and are used as durable and attractive alternatives to standard fillings and crowns. Inlays and onlays are similar restorations but cover different sections of a tooth. They are one-piece, custom-fitted dental restorations that are fabricated from high-strength material to be able to withstand everyday use such as biting and chewing. When properly cared for, these dental restorations can last for decades.

If you are currently experiencing failing restorations, an inlay or onlay may be a better alternative. We would love for you to call our office at 925-778-8080 or request an appointment through our website to come in and have us take a look at your current situation.

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