Inlays & Onlays

When more than half of the tooth’s biting surface is damaged, a dentist will often use an inlay or onlay.

What are dental inlays and onlays?

Inlays and onlays can be made of porcelain, gold, or composite resin. These pieces are bonded to the damaged area of the tooth. An inlay, which is similar to a dental filling is used inside the cusp tips of the tooth. An onlay is a more substantial reconstruction, similar to the inlay but extending out over one or more of the cusps of the tooth.

Traditionally, gold has been the material of choice for inlays and onlays. In recent years, however, porcelain has become increasingly popular due to its strength and color, which can potentially match the natural color of your teeth.

How are inlays and onlays applied?

Inlays and onlays require two appointments to complete the procedure. During the first visit, the filling being replaced or the damaged or decaying area of the tooth is removed, and the tooth is prepared for the inlay or onlay. To ensure proper fit and bite, an impression of the tooth is made by the dentist and sent to a lab for fabrication. The dentist will then apply a temporary sealant on the tooth and schedule the next appointment.

At the second appointment, the temporary sealant is removed. Dr. Jacobs, Dr. Finkel, Dr. Kase, Dr. Katz, Dr. Moeller, Dr. Okamoto or Dr. Schwartz will then make sure that the inlay or onlay fits correctly. If the fit is satisfactory, the inlay or onlay will be bonded to the tooth with a strong resin and polished to a smooth finish.

Considerations for Inlays and Onlays

Traditional fillings can reduce the strength of a natural tooth by up to 50 percent. As an alternative, inlays and onlays, which are bonded directly onto the tooth using special high-strength resins, can actually increase the strength of a tooth by up to 75 percent. As a result, they can last from 10 to 30 years. In some cases, where the damage to the tooth is not extensive enough to merit an entire dental crown, onlays can provide a very good alternative.

Dental Professionals

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I’ve been coming here for years. Always a great experience.

- Emma L

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I would like to thank Dr. Bryan Jacobs for restoring my smile using dental implants. I am no longer ashamed to smile and have a newfound confidence in life! His expertise and experience in prosthodontics is impressive- truly one of a kind. He was is well educated and has a warm chair side manner. The office is beautiful and has spa like amenities. The staff is accommodating and pleasure to work with. Nonetheless, I am grateful to have such a caring dental team.

- Jennifer S

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Love this team! Have made referrals to Dr. Katz for years. He has gone above and beyond for our family for almost 2 decades.

- Lisa P

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I’m not a big fan of dentists. But Dr Katz has turned me around. He and his entire team are wonderful. They are kind, caring, compassionate and fantastic in their profession. I’ve been a patient of Dr Katz for many years. He is, quite simply, the best. I highly recommend him.

- Arthur P

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I came to this office to get my wisdom teeth removed and let me just say Dr. Jacobs is amazing! This was my first time seeing him, and honestly I can’t say enough good things about Dr. Jacobs and his assistant Connie. I was very nervous when I came in and the Dr. and his assistant were the most caring professionals that I’ve ever visited. The wisdom tooth procedure itself went perfect! The day after I honestly had such minimal discomfort it was hard to believe I had teeth removed. One big thing I want to mention is the doctor went above and beyond to help me and even gave me his professional opinion for a procedure which had nothing to do with him. I previously saw a specialist who suggested I get a root canal for a abscessed tooth I had but he seemed unsure if the infection would return. And because my tooth didn’t have any decay or cracking I was very hesitant to get the procedure. When I came to Dr. Jacobs for my wisdom tooth removal I asked him his opinion on the tooth that needed a root canal, and he took the time to bring up my X-rays and show why he thinks I established the abscess in the first place and really made me feel like the root canal was the best option for me. Now mind you I was seeing Dr. Jacobs for a wisdom tooth which had nothing to do with the root canal I needed, and he took his time to explain everything to me even though it had nothing to do with him. This is the first review I have ever done for anything and I just wanted to bring attention to him because he’s honestly a very talented doctor and it was a great experience all around.

- Steven S

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If you don't have a dental office in the Chicago area you cannot go wrong with Dental Professionals!

- Milt H

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