Inlays VS Onlays, What’s The Difference?

dental inlay

What is an Inlay?

An inlay is used when a cavity is too large for simple filling. The inlay is fabricated as a simple solid piece to fit the specific
shape and size of the cavity. The inlay is then cemented in place, otherwise, food and bacteria will re-enter the space, resulting in further decay.

dental onlay

3d render of teeth with dental onlay filling

What is an Onlay?

An onlay is more than just an inlay, but it not exactly a crown. This restoration is characterized by the fact that it covers the
cusp of the tooth and is fabricated as a single, solid piece. The cavity is still drilled from the tooth by the dentist, and an onlay
is fabricated to the exact size and shape of the space.

How long do Onlays and Inlays last?

Dental inlays or onlays usually last for many years with proper care. However, Inlays or onlays may not last as long in a
person’s mouth if they grind their teeth, develop cavities easily, and/or take certain medical conditions.

Dr Adam Still setting up CEREC crown

How do you make an Inlay or Onlay ?

Porcelain and composite inlays or onlays can now be made at our office with CAD/CAM technology and milling machines like the
CEREC. Dr. Still uses this same technology to make “same-day” dental crowns. The tooth is first prepared for restoration. Then, Dr. Still uses the CAD/CAM technology to design a model of the restoration. Finally, a restoration is milled out from a ceramic block and bonded to your tooth. All in the same visit!

To see if an inlay or onlay crown is right for you, Call Dr. Still at (941) 957-3311.