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Inlays and Onlays at Junction Village Dental

Inlays and onlays are a type of restoration that we use in unique circumstances when a filling isn’t appropriate, but a full-coverage crown is not necessary.

Sometimes referred to as “three-quarter crowns” or lab-made “indirect fillings”, inlays and onlays are fabricated outside of your mouth in a laboratory, like a traditional crown. They’re primarily for adult teeth that are heavily broken or decayed. Inlays and onlays restore the missing parts of your tooth, leaving the remaining structures intact.

The Treatment Process

Having an inlay or onlay made is similar to what you would expect when getting a filling. However, the process is separated into two appointments, like a crown. During your first visit, we’ll numb the tooth, remove the damaged enamel and then take an impression. You’ll have a temporary filling placed while the permanent design is being worked up. At this time, we’ll use a special shade guide to match your natural enamel as closely as possible, so that the ceramic restoration blends in with your smile.

Your indirect filling is made at an off-site lab, from materials that offer enhanced strength over a traditional white filling. Since it’s poured from a model and requires a hand-designed process, this can take several days. In most cases, the onlay/inlay will be back in our office and ready to place about two weeks later.

When you return to Junction Village Dental, we’ll remove the temporary filling and then permanently bond the inlay/onlay to your tooth. After it’s set, you shouldn’t be able to differentiate where your tooth stops and the inlay or onlay starts.

Who Is the Ideal Patient?

Inlays and onlays are a service that we offer on a case-by-case basis. Not everyone qualifies for three-quarter crowns, so they’re reserved for specific situations. We’ll assess the structure of your tooth during your exam and weigh various restorative options to protect your smile in the best manner possible.

The Difference Between Inlays and Onlays

Although similar, inlays and onlays play different roles when it comes to repairing a damaged tooth. Inlays lay in the deep grooves and valleys of teeth, such as in instances where a cavity has hollowed out the main structure.

On the other hand, onlays rebuild the higher biting areas called cusps (the pointed edges on the chewing surfaces of your teeth).

Which One Is Right for You?

Schedule an exam and consultation today to learn more about inlays and onlays The Junction.

* Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.


Dental Inlays and Onlays The Junction, Merewether, Newcastle NSW | (02) 4962 1621