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TMJ Treatment Indianapolis, IN

Do you suffer from chronic headaches, unexplained earaches, jaw pain, or other facial pain? If so, you may be one of the millions of people suffering from Temporomandibular Joint Disorders (TMD). TMD is a complex group of problems sometimes referred to as TMJ disorders. Dr. Amy Marckese with Dental Spa offers TMJ treatment in Indianapolis, IN for those suffering from this painful disorder.

What is the Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ)?

The TMJ is a very complex joint that connects the jawbone to the base of your skull. The joint is located in front of each ear. It is made up of many components including discs, ligaments, muscles, and bone. The TMJ is what allows you to move your mouth and perform various functions. This includes talking, chewing, yawning, or simply moving your jaw in any direction.

What is Temporomandibular Joint Disorders (TMD)?

A group of conditions that affect the TMJ and the muscles that surround it is referred to as Temporomandibular Disorders (TMD). TMD can cause a lot of pain and discomfort in the jaw and surrounding areas. There are many things that can lead to TMD and diagnosing it can be difficult.

TMJ treatment in Indianapolis, IN

What Causes TMJ?

Most patients who suffer from TMJ disorders do not recognize the symptoms or realize that they have a dental related problem. They develop for many reasons and are often the result of several issues with your jaw and bite.

You might clench or grind your teeth, tightening your jaw muscles and stressing your TM Joint. Or, you may have a damaged jaw joint due to injury or disease. Crooked teeth can also cause stress on the jaw and result in TMJ.

Whatever the cause, the results may include excessive tooth wear, chronic headaches, clicking or grinding noises in the TM Joint, as well as pain or difficulty in opening or closing one’s mouth.

Our Patients Say It Best

I dreaded going to the dentist before I found dentalSpa. Not only that, but Dr. Marckese-Braun diagnosed a bite problem that has put a stop to chronic migraines I have had and been medicated for forever. I highly recommend her. Not only can you feel like you’re in a spa, but also get the best dental work around!
Jolene C, Zionsville, IN

Common TMJ Symptoms

TMJ pain and symptoms can decrease patient’s quality of life and cause suffering. The symptoms of TMJ can vary greatly between patients. TMJ symptoms often mask themselves or are similar to those of other medical conditions, making diagnosis extremely difficult. It’s important for you to seek care if you have any of these symptoms and especially if they are persistent.


Common symptoms of TMJ disorder include:

  • Headaches, especially upon waking
  • Jaw pain
  • Shoulder, neck, facial pain
  • Clicking or popping when opening or closing jaw
  • Locked jaw or limited mobility in the jaw joint
  • Teeth clenching, teeth grinding, often accompanied by tooth wear
  • Chronic earaches

TMJ Treatment in Indianapolis, IN

If you are diagnosed with TMJ disorder, Dr. Amy Marckese offers TMJ treatment in Indianapolis, IN. She will take a digital scan and create a customized oral appliance specifically designed for you to help alleviate your symptoms. This appliance is 3D printed in her office, resulting in a 2-3 day turnaround time versus 2 weeks when sent to a lab. Our patients also routinely tell us how much more comfortable these 3D-printed appliances are than those previously made in a lab.

An oral appliance is a removable device that helps to keep the teeth and jaw in the proper position during sleep and prevent teeth grinding or clenching. Prolonged teeth grinding or clenching can lead to tooth wear and contribute to tooth decay and gum disease.

Botox injected directly into the masseter muscle can also alleviate TMJ pain and other clenching/grinding symptoms. Botox works by “freezing” the muscle where it is injected. This causes the muscle to relax, which then alleviates the tension along the jawline. This, in turn, reduces soreness, tension headaches, lockjaw, and overall pain. The other advantage of Botox for TMJ is it works all the time, whereas an appliance is often only worn at night. Please note you can still chew normally after masseter muscle Botox because there are many muscles acting together to move the jaw.

The combination of Botox in the masseters with the use of a custom-made appliance gives patients amazing results. Botox injected into the masseter muscle can also slim the jawline as the masseter muscle “shrinks” with the use of Botox.

Dr. Marckese also provides a range of restorative dentistry treatments to repair teeth that have been damaged as a result of TMJ dysfunction. Restorative treatments may include:

TMJ Disorder FAQs

If you would like to learn more about TMD and TMJ treatment, please read through our frequently asked question section. Dr. Amy Marckese is a caring dentist who wants her patients to feel confident about the care they receive for their condition. If you have further questions, please contact our office during regular business hours.

What is the main cause of TMJ?

While doctors are not entirely sure what the root cause of TMJ is, they do know there are certain factors that can contribute to the severity. Misalignment or injury to your teeth or jaw, teeth grinding, arthritis, and stress are all contributing factors, and may lead to muscle tightness in the jaw and overall discomfort related to the syndrome. 

What will happen if TMJ is not treated?

If left untreated, TMJ is likely to worsen and become more severe over time. The longer it goes untreated, treating TMJ will also be more difficult for your provider. Symptoms may worsen, such as chronic and debilitating headaches or dental degradation. In order to prevent this, it is important to seek care early. 

How do dentists treat TMJ?

There are multiple treatment options available, depending on the severity of your condition. In mild cases, treatment may include being prescribed medicine or oral therapies to help strengthen and stretch your jaw muscles.

If your case is more severe, there are multiple surgery options available to you. If you are recommended surgery, be sure to discuss the potential benefits and risks or your procedure to find what is right for you. 

How long does it take to heal after TMJ surgery?

Recovery time from TMJ surgery can vary depending on the surgery performed. Most of the options are outpatient procedures, meaning you will be home on the same day. You may need multiple days of rest following your procedure for a full recovery, so be sure to consult your dentist for your own recovery plan.

What vitamin deficiency causes teeth grinding?

Teeth grinding can be caused by vitamin D deficiency. If a patient is deficient in vitamin D, they may be associated with higher potential to grind their teeth. Dentists link this vitamin deficiency to increased levels of stress, which is usually the main cause of teeth grinding.

What is myofascial pain?

Myofascial pain is a common type of TMD. It essentially entails patients to experience discomfort or pain in the muscles that control the jaw movement as well as in the neck and shoulders. Myofascial pain results from muscle tension, teeth clenching, teeth grinding, and other stress related tension factors.

Schedule a Dental Exam & Consultation for TMJ Treatment in Indianapolis, IN

TMJ therapy can make a dramatic improvement to your quality of life. If you think that you may have TMJ dysfunction, call our Indianapolis dental office near you at 866.486.0230, or schedule an appointment with your restorative dentist in Indianapolis, IN today.