Inlay & Onlay An Overview

A dental inlay or onlay is used to treat moderate to advanced decay as well as other tooth damage and cosmetic blemishes. An inlay or onlay is highly useful for repairing tooth damage that covers a large surface area, or for decay in the ridges of the crown of the molars.

Custom designed and fabricated, the inlay or onlay fits securely to the tooth for a comfortable and lasting dental restoration. The inlay or onlay can be custom designed to match the natural tooth surface for a seamless looking smile.

The Difference Between An Inlay & Onlay


An inlay is designed to fit into the cusp of the tooth crown. Inlays are used to avoid tooth extraction. Dr. Ahrabi permanently bonds the inlay to a cleaned tooth. Inlays are custom designed to match the color of the natural tooth using high-quality ceramic.


Onlays are used on the surface of the tooth and can repair larger areas of decay. Onlays are also used to repair cracks, chips or breaks. Often referred to as a partial crown, the onlay is a more conservative treatment option that helps to support the natural tooth for a lasting dental restoration.

An inlay or onlay can prevent the need for a tooth extraction. Patients with more advanced decay may choose an inlay or onlay as an alternative to replacing a damaged tooth. Preventive dental care and bi-annual dental check ups can help catch tooth decay and other developing oral health concerns early allowing for conservative dental treatment.

Inlay & Onlay What to Expect

Dr. Ahrabi will begin by thoroughly removing all decayed tissue from the affected tooth. Then, the tooth will be cleaned and prepared.

The inlay or onlay will e designed to fit precisely in or on the affected area. The inlay or onlay will be permanently bonded to the tooth helping to seal out any potential for future decay and reinforcing the stability of the tooth.

The inlay or onlay can be color matched to blend seamlessly with your smile for an aesthetically pleasing result.

Dr. Abbas Ahrabi

Why choose Oakton Dental Center?

Oakton Dental Center provides personalized oral health care for patients and families in the Oakton, VA area and many surrounding Northern VA communities. Dr. Ahrabi has over 15 years of experience and maintains a commitment to continuing education in all aspects of dentistry.

As a team of dental professionals, we are committed to the health, beauty, and longevity of your smile. Through comprehensive care and individualized oral hygiene, we can help you to maintain, restore or enhance your natural smile.