What to Expect When Getting a Dental Onlay

Dental Crowns and Dental Bridges Lilburn, GA

Having a bright, natural smile can restore one’s confidence, and a dental onlay can help get this result. An onlay, also known as a partial crown, is used in restorative dentistry for multiple reasons. It can help protect the teeth as well as rejuvenate the smile.

Benefits of getting a dental onlay

An onlay can be an alternative for a traditional metal filling when a cavity is big enough to cause damage to the cusps of the tooth. It can also be used when something else caused damage to the teeth.

In addition to replacing damaged or decayed areas of the teeth, a dental onlay can help increase the whiteness and brightness of a smile. Onlays are usually made up of resin or porcelain, which both look natural and can be matched to the shades of the other teeth.

Another benefit of onlays is that they extend the life of a tooth, being durable and resistant to degradation and damage. This type of restorative dentistry lasts longer than crowns or fillings. An onlay also improves dental hygiene because it prevents bacteria and other infections from getting into the tooth.

Onlay procedure

The placement of a dental onlay typically requires two visits unless the dentist has a lab on site.

Removal process

During the initial visit, the dentist removes the cavity or damaged part of the tooth. The dentist only takes out the decayed portion and keeps as much of the natural tooth as possible.

Mold creation

The next step is to take a mold impression of the affected tooth. Dental putty is laid over the tooth and, when it is ready, it is sent to the lab, which constructs the onlay.

Temporary replacement

To protect the exposed tooth until the onlay is prepared, the dentist places a filling. This temporarily keeps out food and bacteria as well as prevents sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures.  

Onlay preparation

Once the lab has finished fabricating the permanent onlay, the patient comes in for the second and final appointment. The dentist removes the temporary filling, cleans the tooth, and prepares it for the placement of the onlay. The dentist places the onlay and makes sure it fits properly.

Bonding process

Once the onlay fits perfectly, the dentist uses dental cement to bond it to the tooth. It then is polished so it is smooth and looks like the teeth surrounding it.


For the first day or two, the patient may experience sensitivity around the affected tooth. During this time, cold and hot beverages should be avoided, as should sticky foods. If the bite seems off, the dentist should be contacted to make any adjustments.

Once the sensitivity and soreness go away, good dental hygiene is important. This includes brushing at least twice a day, flossing, and getting regular dental exams.


People who are looking for restorative dentistry that also results in bright and natural-looking teeth may want to consider a dental onlay. The dentist can discuss its advantages and recommend if it is a good choice for your needs.

Request an appointment here: https://www.lilburnfamilydentistry.com or call Lilburn Family Dentistry at (770) 800-0178 for an appointment in our Lilburn office.

Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Dental Crowns and Dental Bridges in Lilburn, GA.

Recent Posts

Can A Dental Crown Conserve Tooth Structure?

The general purpose of dental crown treatment is to restore the size, shape, function, appearance, and health of a damaged tooth. During the process, the dentist can ensure the crown restores or protects the natural structure of the tooth. This allows the tooth to keep its ideal natural appearance and helps with function as well. The…

Dental Crowns - How To Identify When Something Is Wrong

Dental crowns are a popular option for restoring and protecting teeth. A crown is a cover placed over a tooth that is badly decayed or damaged. It is usually referred to as a cap. A crown can help restore the shape and appearance of your tooth.Crowns are often recommended by dentists to solve a variety…

Why A Crown Is Better Than An Implant

As the dental world has evolved greatly over time, there are now many different ways to treat cavities, decay, and erosion of the teeth. Although, the best treatment option may depend on the severity of the problem, the patient, and the dentist too, finding the best treatment option can be overwhelming.Two of the most common…

Six Great Options For Cosmetic Dentistry, Including Crowns And Bridges

Currently considering your cosmetic dentistry choices? Maybe all you need is a professional teeth whitening service and you are good to go? Or maybe you have a small chip in your tooth that you would like to have fixed? Or maybe you have a few teeth that are in jeopardy of needing to be removed…

Recent Posts

Common Tooth Replacement Options

Common Tooth Replacement Options

If you lose an adult tooth, it is important to get a tooth replacement option as soon as possible. Lost teeth not only make for gaps in a smile but can lead to misalignment and lost bone mass in the jaw. Luckily, with advances in dental technology, there are a few common treatments that can…

How ClearCorrect Can Boost Your Smile

How ClearCorrect Can Boost Your Smile

ClearCorrect® is a brand of teeth straightening system. It uses custom-fit, clear aligners specific to each patient’s dental alignment needs. The goal of this system is to straighten your smile by the time you finish wearing all the aligners. If you want to know how this system can boost your smile, here are the details.Wearing…