Inlays and Onlays
inlays and onlays

An effective way to restore your tooth!

Inlays and Onlays

While most people know the role played by fillings & crowns when it comes to cavities & dental decay, the importance of Inlays and Onlays isn’t widely known.

Simply put, while fillings are useful where cavities are small & crowns are used when the decay is deep, the role of dental Inlays & Onlays lies somewhere in between. While they are more substantial than fillings, they aren’t as intrusive as crowns. Their role in saving a damaged tooth cannot be overstated.

What are Inlays?

These are primarily used where the chewing surface of the tooth is damaged. When a dentist feels that the filling will not be enough to strengthen the tooth, he resorts to an inlay.

Inlays are created by taking an imprint of the affected area. Since the Inlay is created to meet your exact requirements, they fit perfectly into the tooth. Since the color of the Inlay is matched with the color of the tooth, you can rest assured that they are not noticeable.

What is a Dental Onlay?

The Onlays are used when there is damage to the biting surface of the tooth as also to the cusps. It does not only protect the decaying area; it also adds to the strength of the tooth. The process largely involves drilling out the cavity, cleaning up the area after placing an anesthetic. A temporary Onlay is then placed over the cavity while the impression for a permanent Onlay is taken. The permanent Onlay is placed once it is received from the lab.

The advantage with an Onlay is that the tooth structure is preserved.

Difference between Inlays & Onlays

An Inlay fills the cavities and hollows in the tooth, whereas an Onlay not just fills in the cavities but also the cusps. While Onlays are like crowns they do not cover the entire surface of the tooth.

While both Inlays & Onlays are made of the same material, they cover different areas of the tooth.

Types of Dental Inlays and Onlays

Inlays and Onlays are largely made up of 4 kinds of materials:


These are preferred as they are tooth colored in their appearance. Not only do they work well aesthetically, but they are also preferred on account of their strength.


For patients who grind their teeth, this is ideal since Zirconia is strong & long lasting. These are also known to blend in with the appearance of the teeth.


When it comes to high-pressure restorations, gold inlays & onlays are ideal. Not only is gold tough, but it also resists wear & tear. Therefore, Gold Inlays & Onlays are a long-lasting solution even though they come at a high cost and are noticeable.


Composite is preferred because it is natural looking and hence gels well with the tooth. It is also known to cause less wear on the opposing teeth. In terms of durability, however, it does not compare well with porcelain, gold & zirconia.

Inlays and Onlays - After Care

You need to practice regular oral hygiene. Brushing & flossing your teeth is imperative. It is also important to go to the dentist for follow-up visits to check on the tooth's health. Due care should also be taken to ensure that wear and tear on the Inlays & Onlays is minimized. For instance, if you tend to grind your teeth at night, it will be advisable to wear night guards. Similarly avoiding hard, chewy food is also key.

Why choose Dental Oasis Family Dentistry for Inlays & Onlays in Pleasanton?

At Dental Oasis Family Dentistry, we have highly experienced dentists who specialize in restorative dentistry and will ensure that they offer you the right Inlay or Onlay solution. Known for our professional as well as compassionate services, we are the go-to option when it comes to the highest quality dental care.

Book your Inlays and Onlays appointment now!

Want to increase the strength of your teeth with inlays or onlays? Inlays/Onlays can be the best available option for you. When you visit our dental office, we review all the available options and create a suitable procedure plan to strengthen your teeth. If you want to make your smile white and beautiful, call us at 925 846 4491 or email us at or click the following button to schedule an appointment.

We look forward to caring for your smile.

Schedule An Appointment Now


Inlays & Onlays FAQs

1. What are the benefits of Inlays & Onlays?

They are a handy way to restore your teeth that have suffered tooth decay without having to replace the entire outer portion as is done with a crown. As opposed to fillings, this procedure also strengthens the structure of the tooth.

2. What can I expect at the initial consultation?

An experienced dentist will determine whether the tooth can be repaired with an Inlay or Onlay procedure. Once the dentist is certain that it will work well, he will discuss the choice of material with you.

3. How long will the Inlays and Onlays procedure take?

Typically, each visit takes about an hour. However, if you are getting an Onlay procedure it could take a little longer during the first visit as some tooth structure will need to be removed.

4. Is the Inlays and Onlays process painful?

The dentist will offer you a local anesthetic that will take care of the pain during the procedure. Post the procedure, you do not tend to experience much pain. If there is any residual pain, an over-the-counter painkiller is enough.

5. What can I expect after the Inlays and Onlays procedure?

You may take a little time to adapt to the new chewing surfaces. You could experience some amount of sensitivity, which will resolve in one or two days.

6. What is the recovery period like?

The Inlay & Onlay procedure rarely requires any recovery time.

7. How long do Inlays & Onlays last?

They can last up to 30 years depending on the material chosen as also the kind of oral hygiene and aftercare that you follow.

8. Who is an ideal candidate for an Inlay or Onlay procedure?

If you have too much decay which cannot be addressed by a filling but not so much that necessitates a crown, an inlay or onlay procedure may work well. Depending upon where the damage is, your dentist will recommend what works for you.

9. How much do Inlays and Onlays cost?

The cost depends on several factors. The first being how much damage a tooth has suffered. The material chosen also impacts the cost. If you need sedation, there will be an additional cost.

On average, you could be paying between $650 to $1,200 for each tooth that requires restoration.

10. How can I reach you for a procedure?

You can call us at 925-846-4491 and our customer support team will immediately help to schedule your appointment.