Porcelain (tooth coloured) inlays and onlays are restorations placed usually on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth.
An inlay fits within the confines of the teeth. An onlay covers the majority of the chewing surface of the tooth. These can be made of either Composite resin or EMAX ceramics. Zirconia is now becoming the gold standard for these type of restorations due to the significantly higher strength compared to all other tooth-coloured material, reducing the amount of tooth needing to be removed, to accommodate the thickness of the new onlay.
The procedure involves removing decayed tooth structure or old fillings, preparing the tooth cavity, taking an impression of the cavity to fabricate a custom-fit inlay or onlay. Two visits are required to complete the treatment. Another significant advantage is reduced tooth preparation (cutting) to allow the inlay/onlay to fit.