Home/Blog / Cost of porcelain onlays

Cost of porcelain onlays

Today my dentist says I need an “onlay porcelain/ceramic 3 surface” on tooth no.3 and one on no.2. He needs to remove the old amalgam fillings before puting on the onlays. Costs; $2,600.00. Is this a fair price, here in Edmond, Oklahoma? Thank you for your time!!
– Ed from Oklahoma

Dear Ed,
$2600 for two onlays, including the buildups that have to be done underneath them, I’m guessing is about average for Oklahoma, maybe a little bit higher than average. There are excellent dentists who would charge considerably more than that. Some would charge double that. The average cost would be somewhat higher here in the Chicago area.

Generally, dentists who recommend and do porcelain onlays tend to be at the higher end of costs, because onlays are considerably more difficult to do than crowns and require more precision. So a dentist who recommends an onlay would tend to be one who is very demanding of himself or herself – kind of a perfectionist type. I’m not saying that’s an absolute rule, but it’s a tendency. Probably 90% of dentists would do a crown on a tooth that’s broken down to the extent that it needs an onlay. A dental crown is much simpler, and works okay, and the fee is usually about the same. But a well-done onlay conserves healthy tooth structure and is gentler on the gums. So the motivation to do an onlay is usually simply the satisfaction of doing a better service for the patient.

I’m not saying that your dentist is an excellent dentist simply because he’s recommending a porcelain onlay, but I’m saying that it’s a good sign that he maybe is.

Another link:
Dr. Newkirk also provides emergency dentistry in Naperville.