Dental inlays and onlays serve several purposes and are important treatment options in restorative dentistry. They can be used to restore strength, eliminate discomfort, and prevent tooth loss in rear teeth with mild to moderate decay. They can also repair rear teeth that have been fractured or damaged. Dental inlays and onlays made of tooth-coloured material are used to replace traditional metal fillings for a more natural-looking appearance.
Dental inlays and dental onlays are similar in purpose; however, inlays are used to treat the indented top surfaces of teeth and onlays are used to treat larger surface areas. Both treatments generally require two office visits. In the first visit, impressions are taken of the patient’s teeth that are used to create the dental inlays or onlays. Temporary inlays or onlays are placed to protect the teeth until the permanent inlays or onlays are placed in the second office visit.