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Did you 'make' your child get braces?

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Old 07-01-2011, 11:10 AM   #1
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Default Did you 'make' your child get braces?

My daughter is almost 12 and we went a couple of weeks ago to an orthodontist for a consult. She is indeed a candidate for braces.
Her top teeth are all crossed and her 'vampire fang' teeth are coming it way up high. Her friends all have braces and tell her that it hurts, so she doesn't want to get them.
I had braces when I was 20. At that point it was my decision because I was an adult. Should I let her decide, even though she's only 12?
I told her that if she waits until she's an adult, she'll be the one having to pay for them - lol.
I didn't even think about her not wanting to do it. I just thought it is what 'we' should do. Should I give her the choice??

Thanks!
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Old 07-01-2011, 11:25 AM   #2
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I'm not a parent, but I'll give my opinion anyway. I think it's actually a health issue and therefore should be made my the parent. Crossed teeth can be harder to floss and take care of and can potentially lead to gum diseases. I didn't need braces, so I'm not sure about the pain involved.

I'm sure she'll thank you later for it.
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Old 07-01-2011, 11:27 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by ddc View Post
My daughter is almost 12 and we went a couple of weeks ago to an orthodontist for a consult. She is indeed a candidate for braces.
Her top teeth are all crossed and her 'vampire fang' teeth are coming it way up high. Her friends all have braces and tell her that it hurts, so she doesn't want to get them.
I had braces when I was 20. At that point it was my decision because I was an adult. Should I let her decide, even though she's only 12?
I told her that if she waits until she's an adult, she'll be the one having to pay for them - lol.
I didn't even think about her not wanting to do it. I just thought it is what 'we' should do. Should I give her the choice??

Thanks!
It does hurt, but bad teeth could affect her confidance later on in her teens. We got my stepdaughter braces at 10. Most of her baby teeth were still in and the ones that did come out, were not growing in very fast. Since getting braces, 3 baby teeth have fallen out and are growing in faster.

She has just the top brackets, and later on will get head gear for just nighttime. When all her adult teeth are in, she will get top and bottom brackets in.

It does hurt, when the bands are tightend, but childrens liquid asprin helps with the pain. She was excited to get them because she got to pick colors. She also is more aware of her crooked teeth at an early age and knows that even though it hurts now, later on her teeth will be straight and pretty.

I'd say take care of it now rather than later. One less thing for her to be aware of in her teens.
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Old 07-01-2011, 11:34 AM   #4
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As the parent you should decide. If you let her decide she will be in for even more problems than a little pain. When she is an adult she will want to know why nothing was done about her teeth.
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Old 07-01-2011, 11:45 AM   #5
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I had braces at age 12 and my parents just had me do it. I didn't think twice about saying no because I knew it would straighten out my teeth and close up some pretty major gaps. As far as pain, I don't remember them "hurting" so to speak, but I remember the pressure and tightness when they were tightened...but it wasn't so bad that I regretted ever having braces. I think you should have her get them. It's for her oral health as well as her smile!
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Old 07-01-2011, 11:57 AM   #6
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I had my oldest get them both for cosmetic reasons and health. As a parent I made the decision and she was not happy with me but now, nearly 5 years later she is glad I had her get them.
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Old 07-01-2011, 11:57 AM   #7
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.... When she is an adult she will want to know why nothing was done about her teeth.
She may even resent you for not making her get them.

I HATE my teeth (probably more than being fat) and always have. I was not "allowed" to get braces (and my Grandma would have paid for them) I was told my oral hygiene was not good enough, but there would have always been an excuse.

I have never been able to afford adult braces and other things have always seemed more important so I have learned to persevere and cringe at pictures.
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:28 PM   #8
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She may even resent you for not making her get them.
THIS!!! I hate that my mother listened to my temper tantrum when I was a child and had a consultation about getting braces. I was 12 or 13 and I did NOT want to get metal in my mouth, it would totally have made me "un-popular" at the time.

Now, as a 22 year old adult, I wish she had just smacked me around and told me to get them. I'm considering them now since my smile isn't as pretty as I would like and have to do a closed-smile in pictures to feel confident.
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:50 PM   #9
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I think one of the most important decisions parents should make is ensuring their child's teeth are maintained. Our culture places a lot of emphasis on teeth and it is an immediate indicator of economic status in our society. Think about it...what is your immediate thought when you meet someone with missing front teeth?

My parents had me (and my sister) in braces at age 8 and they were removed at age 12. Additionally, we went to the dentist every six months, without fail, for cleanings. I hated the braces and I hated being the only one wearing them at such a young age. But when I think back on it, everyone who wore them (regardless of age), complained. They are uncomfortable and make you feel self-conscious; who WOULD like them? But I am eternally grateful now that my teeth are healthy and straight and I've thanked my parents many times for their recognition that oral care was mandatory. Plus, the friends I have whose parents did not consider oral health to be that important, have spent their entire lives battling issues I never have to worry about.

The worst case scenario is that she complains about them now and suffers minor discomfort. What is the worst case scenario if her teeth are not addressed?
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:56 PM   #10
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I think you should make her get them. I would explain the short-term and longterm cosmetic and Health benefits of having straighter aligned teeth and emphasize that having her teeth alignment corrected will improve her health overall (getting braces provides more than cosmetic benefits)! In the end, I think it's your decision to make as the parent, who's in charge of her health right now. Moreover, as some have stated, your daughter may resent you for not making her get them! My mother made my sister get braces after reasoning with her didn't work, and now she is so grateful and cannot stop smiling (by nature, my sis doesn't do perky, but she sure smiles a lot now!). I can think of things my mother made me do, I didn't want to do, but now as an adult I can appreciate her wisdom and I'm so grateful she stood her ground.

BTW, since your daughter is 12, you can probably tell her that she doesn't want to be the girl/woman with the jacked up teeth when it's time for her to date! She better get them now when she's too young and all of the other girls and boys her age has them.
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:57 PM   #11
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My parents never got me braces due to their finances...so I can't say I resent them for it, but I definitely am bitter about it, because I wish I would have had them. I just had a consultation for some, and since I'm now 25 the orthodontist referred me to a surgeon...

So, get them for your daughter. They hurt when they're being adjusted for a few days, but that's it. The pain inflicted on her ego (and her wallet) when she gets older will be worse. As an adult our teeth can't easily be moved around, and our jaw bones settle as the teeth do...so now, I'd have to have surgery to realign my whole JAW...$$$$$
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:57 PM   #12
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Would you ask your child's permission to get them vaccines? Or if they needed a shot in order to improve their health? This isn't an "up for discussion" issue.

I was 11 when I had braces, and as an adult appreciate how they were fixed early enough that I avoided problems I might have experienced had my parents put it off.

This is not about vanity, after all. This is about the health of her teeth! Dental problems are compounded when teeth aren't fixed.

Side note: Yeah. Braces can make your mouth ache a little. They can sometimes be a little irritating. Not only do you get used to it, but who cares if it's a little pain now when it saves MORE pain down the road?
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Old 07-01-2011, 04:43 PM   #13
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I'm not a parent, but as a kid I wasn't eligible for braces till highschool - later than all my friends. And by that time I wanted them because I was super self-conscious about my teeth.

Once her friends' braces come off and she is the only one with crooked teeth she may be feeling very differently - but if you get them now she can still moan and groan about how evil you are, and also complain with all her friends about how much they hate having braces. And then they can get matching bands for school.

Yes, they will likely hurt. Right after they're put on and a couple days each time their tightened, it's not pleasant. But it's by no means "unbearable".

I kind of think of it in a similar vein to my mom forcing me to take piano lessons for a couple years (along with various other activities). Some I liked, some I didn't. Overall I'm glad she pushed me to try things out because now I have some interests I wouldn't otherwise, but at the time I often threw fits because I didn't want to do it.

Momentary pain; lifelong straight teeth. Another analogy - if my parents could have put me on a 1-yr treatment for obesity that would have me fit and healthy for the rest of my life, I probably would have whined and screamed then but I'd be sooo glad of it now.
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Old 07-01-2011, 04:46 PM   #14
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One more thing to add

When I was a kid I was in a car wreck and got a scar on my face. My parents left it up to me if I wanted to go back to the doctor to have the scar reduced cosmetically about a year after the accident. I was afraid of the pain (getting the stitches had really hurt), so I said no.

It doesn't really bother me these days (over time it faded a fair bit too), but when I think about it I wish I had just gone to have it minimized. Seems pretty similar.
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Old 07-01-2011, 04:52 PM   #15
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i am a parent but he is only 2 1/2. i have needed braces all my life and ill be 26 on the 6th. my two front teeth are pushed in towards each other and my canines are high up in my gums and one is pushed out a lil. my bottom 4 teeth arent that crooked but still bad enough to impact my flossing. they cause me alot of (literal) headaches and my teeth get cavities because there are spaces i cannot get to. i wish i could have had that option when i was her age. i grew up without health insurance and was really poor. the sad part is it appears my son has inherited my teeth. you better believe i would make him get braces. think about it, you are saving her soooo much heartache later in life. shes gonna be begging for them in high school when shes getting ready for senior pics. i hope to get logan braces when hes old enough so he doesnt have to go through what i do.

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