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Moms with Teens Moms with Teens

16 year old never brushes his teeth

Posted by on May. 4, 2014 at 10:47 PM
  • 12 Replies

My son has always had trouble remembering to brush his teeth.  We made it part of the routine when he was little but with busy lives as he got older we stopped standing over him. He always gets a stern talking to at the dentist but it doesn't help.  Yesterday, he asked me where his toothbrush was and I told him that I put it in the drawer before our cleaning lady came.  OMG - the cleaners came on Monday!  He didn't brush his teeth for a whole week!  How can this not bother him?  I keep hoping a girl will come along and make him more conscious about it but that hasn't happened yet - maybe because of his smelly breath!  I guess I just have to go back to standing over him!  We paid a lot of money for his braces and I feel like his teeth are going to rot.  Surprisingly, he has no cavities so I think that is why he thinks he can get away with it.  Kind of just venting but if anyone has any other suggestion, my ears are open!

by on May. 4, 2014 at 10:47 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Momofmenagerie
by Member on May. 5, 2014 at 12:00 AM
1 mom liked this
My 14 yr old is required to blow fresh breath into my face at night. It's a " joke" but not at the same time.

If you don't want to make it a joke ( although less brow beating that way)

If he has a phone , have him set an alarm for the same time every night, just like taking meds. Pick the most obnoxious tone he's got.
No phone? You have one, you set an alarm and continue to remind.

However my teen thinks it 's hilarious to exhale in my face every nite because it isn't at the exact same time every night and I never know if he's coming in for a hug/ kiss, or if he's planning on an unexpected exhale into my face! Kind of like a healthy prank on mom!

I just made it a " chore" with a little fun added.
I'll admit, it's a bit harder in the AM, but again, an alarm set for 7 min before he walks out the door helps.
atlmom2
by Susie on May. 5, 2014 at 12:23 AM

That is just gross and something that should have become routine before he was old enough to go to school.  

Starrnak
by New Member on May. 5, 2014 at 3:12 AM
I used to work with teens that had the same problem. He may not realize that his breath stinks. Have him floss and then make him smell it. Gross, but it will reek.
suesues
by Silver Member on May. 5, 2014 at 8:10 AM
1 mom liked this

go back to treating him like a baby dont let him leave house untill he does it how gross dont his friends tell him he smells 

mommyofthezoo03
by Member on May. 5, 2014 at 8:16 AM
2 moms liked this

I know for fact that tooth brushing has been a routine in my house since the first teeth appeared. They are expected/told to brush their teeth after breakfast and before bed. 4 and 6 yr olds are great. 13 yr old used to be. Last time she went to the dentist they told her she has severe gum infection and will likeley lose all of her teeth in the next 3-5 yrs if she doesn't change. They gave her a regimine to follow. Brush in the morning, follow with listerine. Listerine after school. Brush at bedtime following with a flouride rinse. Does she do this? No. Do we yell? Yes. Do we send her in to do this? Yes. Does it get done? No. The only thing left for us to do is hold her down and brush her teeth for her and that just isn't going to work. Whether or not my kid or the original posters kid brushes their teeth is not a reflection of the parenting. Kids are usually hungry for independence adn control over their lives in the teen years and this is something they can control.

Quoting atlmom2:

That is just gross and something that should have become routine before he was old enough to go to school.  


conniehar
by New Member on May. 5, 2014 at 6:22 PM

Thanks - we gave him a really hard time about it last night and he seemed genuinely shocked when he realized it had been a week.  He tried arguing that we were wrong but eventually realized it.  So far, he brushed his teeth last night and this morning without me telling him.  I like the idea of an alarm.  At one point a few years ago, I left a note on top of the one med he takes in the morning but eventually the note was ignored.  We will keep trying - he doesn't believe that his teeth will fall out!

mattsmom14
by Member on May. 6, 2014 at 5:08 PM
Hello! I'm a Dental Hygienist and I have the same problem with my 15 year old son if that makes you feel any better. lol. It's a teenager thing, not poor parenting, despite what some people who choose to make snarky comments seem to be implying. I found that some teenagers just lose their sense of hygiene temporarily during these confusing years. I just stay on mine about it, like I had to do when he was younger. I've thought the same thing about my son, that when he gets interested in a girl, it's going to start happening spontaneously. They'll figure it out. The fact that you are concerned about it and are not letting it slide is really the main thing right now. lucky for you, it sounds like he's not very cavity prone. He should get through this phase without much damage.
gdiamante
by Bronze Member on May. 6, 2014 at 6:10 PM

Thanks for saying that. My son has developed the same aversion, and he simply doesn't care. It used to be a habit with him when he was little, but then he just stopped doing it unless I actually hand him the toothbrush and tell him to do it. He won't do it on his own.

Quoting mattsmom14: Hello! I'm a Dental Hygienist and I have the same problem with my 15 year old son if that makes you feel any better. lol. It's a teenager thing, not poor parenting, despite what some people who choose to make snarky comments seem to be implying. I found that some teenagers just lose their sense of hygiene temporarily during these confusing years. I just stay on mine about it, like I had to do when he was younger. I've thought the same thing about my son, that when he gets interested in a girl, it's going to start happening spontaneously. They'll figure it out. The fact that you are concerned about it and are not letting it slide is really the main thing right now. lucky for you, it sounds like he's not very cavity prone. He should get through this phase without much damage.


mattsmom14
by Member on May. 6, 2014 at 6:25 PM
It just seems to me that this age group has so many things on their minds that some kids just lose focus of these things that are not obvious (to them). It seems to be worse with boys. My step daughters weren't as bad about those things.

Quoting gdiamante:

Thanks for saying that. My son has developed the same aversion, and he simply doesn't care. It used to be a habit with him when he was little, but then he just stopped doing it unless I actually hand him the toothbrush and tell him to do it. He won't do it on his own.

Quoting mattsmom14: Hello! I'm a Dental Hygienist and I have the same problem with my 15 year old son if that makes you feel any better. lol. It's a teenager thing, not poor parenting, despite what some people who choose to make snarky comments seem to be implying. I found that some teenagers just lose their sense of hygiene temporarily during these confusing years. I just stay on mine about it, like I had to do when he was younger. I've thought the same thing about my son, that when he gets interested in a girl, it's going to start happening spontaneously. They'll figure it out. The fact that you are concerned about it and are not letting it slide is really the main thing right now. lucky for you, it sounds like he's not very cavity prone. He should get through this phase without much damage.

cgarlic
by Member on May. 7, 2014 at 8:16 AM

Omg im glad we  the only ones dealing with this, my SS is 13 & has to be forced to practice any basic hygiene.  I have physically brushed his teeth for him & he doesn't care.  DH basically has no teeth for various issues & he will ask SS if he wants to be like him & SS says it's gross but still doesn't brush.  Excuse my language SS's breath will literally smell like he ate dog crap to the point that I've almost thrown up on him when he talks to me (pregnant) & he still doesn't care.

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