Inlays & Onlays

At Enhance Family Dental, we offer inlays and onlays to repair teeth that are too damaged for a simple filling but not so much that they need a crown. Inlays and onlays save the healthy portion of a tooth and offer it stability and strength so that it can resume its normal functions.

Difference Between an Inlay and an Onlay

A dental inlay is a premade filling that is fitted into the pits and grooves in the center of your teeth. This restorative procedure is used to fix decay that has not extended to the cusps of the tooth.

In contrast, a dental onlay is a restorative method used to repair a tooth with more extensive damage that has spread to the cusps or the biting surface of the tooth.

Both inlays and onlays are fabricated outside the mouth in a dental lab, unlike regular fillings, and then bonded to your teeth. For this reason, they are also known as indirect fillings. Inlays and onlays are less aggressive and less expensive options than full crowns.

Materials Used In Inlays and Onlays

Composite Resin

Composite resin is a tooth-colored material made from silica and other materials. Although not as durable as other material, composite resin inlays and onlays are quite popular because their color matches the original color of the teeth.


Ceramic and porcelain inlays and onlays are also preferred by most patients as the material is tooth-colored, resistant to staining, and more durable than composite resin.


Metal inlays and onlays may contain silver amalgam or gold. We often use metal inlays and onlays on molars because of the high strength and durability of these metals. However, most people don’t find them aesthetically pleasing. Also, gold inlays and onlays have a prohibitive cost.
Dental inlays and onlays are more durable and strong than regular fillings made from amalgam or composite resin. On the other hand, gold inlays are the most long-lasting and most expensive.

When are Dental Inlays and Onlays Used?

At Enhance Family Dental, Brian Hill, DDS may recommend inlays and onlays for the following reasons.
•  Fractured and chipped teeth that cannot be repaired properly with simple dental fillings but do not require comprehensive restorative options like a root canal therapy.
•  Moderate-to-severe tooth decay and cavities that are caused by a build-up of bacteria in your mouth. Although traditional fillings are sufficient for minor tooth damage, moderate-to-severe cavities may be fixed with dental inlays and onlays without the need for a crown.

What To Expect After An Inlay Or Onlay Procedure?

Your mouth, gums, and tongue may feel numb for a few hours after the procedure as it takes time for the anesthesia to wear off. You may also feel low-to-moderate gum tenderness, and your teeth may become more sensitive to hot and cold foods. This is perfectly normal, and these symptoms will abate in a few days.

However, if the symptoms worsen or you experience fever, bleeding, problems in chewing, shortness of breath, hives or severe pain in your gums, call us at (586) 666-4950, as it can be an infection or an allergic reaction to the anesthesia used during the procedure.

(586) 666-4950
37540 Gratiot Ave, Clinton Township, MI 48036

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Enhance Family Dental, 37540 Gratiot Ave, Clinton Township, MI 48036 | (586) 666-4950 | | 2/11/2021 | Related Phrases: Dentist Clinton Township MI | Dentist Clinton Township MI |