While they are more involved than traditional dental fillings, they are not as extensive as full dental crowns. The use of an inlay or onlay to repair damage allows a tooth to keep most of its original structure and integrity.

Some benefits of inlays and onlays include:

  • Helps teeth remain intact for the long term
  • Increases the overall strength of a tooth
  • Prevents the need for more extensive treatments

Inlays are used for damage to a tooth that is on the chewing surface, limited to the area between the cusps or points. Dental onlays are used when the damage extends over at least one of the points of the tooth. Both inlays and onlays will remain securely in place using a strong dental adhesive and leave teeth with a natural appearance and normal functionality.

An inlay or onlay is sometimes referred to as a partial crown or an indirect filling. Rather than being made directly on the tooth like a traditional filling, inlays and onlays are created outside of the tooth and then bonded to the surface.

Composite and porcelain onlays and inlays are aesthetically pleasing as they match the natural color of your tooth. Metal can also be used to make these restorations. Dental professionals sometimes recommend metal onlays or inlays in molars, or back teeth, because of metal’s durability and strength.

For more information about inlays and onlays, or other types of restorations, contact Bedford Dental at (708) 496-8896.