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Dental inlays and onlays are a conservative alternative to full coverage dental crowns. Also known as indirect fillings, dental inlays and onlays offer a well-fitting, stronger, longer lasting reparative solution to tooth decay or similar damage. These restorations are beneficial from both an esthetic and functional point of view.

Dental inlays and dental onlays can often be used in place of traditional dental fillings to treat tooth decay or similar structural damage. Whereas dental fillings are molded into place within the mouth during a dental visit, inlays and onlays are fabricated indirectly in a dental lab before being fitted and bonded to the damaged tooth.

Restorations are known as dental inlays when the material is bonded within the center of a tooth. Conversely, restorations are called dental onlays when the extent of the damage requires the inclusion of one or more cusps (points) of the tooth or full coverage of the biting surface.

Learn more about tooth inlays and onlays by reading our Dental Inlays & Onlays FAQs.