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Trouble with teen wearing retainers

Posted by on Apr. 1, 2010 at 6:42 PM
  • 10 Replies

Hi there!  I have an ALMOST 17 year old boy who just got his braces off a few weeks ago.  He is balking at wearing his retainers full time for the first 6 months, as ordered by his ortho.  He had always been a homebody so I never had much trouble with getting him to go along with Dr.'s orders, and he normally, even if grudgingly, went along with my instructions.   

However, within the past few months he has become a little more social, AND just started his first job this week.  He goes to high school all day, then works all evening.  He is exhausted and sore all over and says "For the first time in 2 years my mouth doesn't hurt." (When he doesn't wear the retainers.) He is arguing that wearing his retainers at night, while sleeping, is all he needs to do. Other friends, out of braces, have told him that is all that is neccessary.  I understand that he is now maturing and that I need to quit trying to control his every move. However, I do need to find a balance instead of rolling over and playing dead, as a mom. The braces were a very complicated and expensive process so I don't want to risk any problems.  Does anyone have any advice on how to handle these kinds of situations?  THANKS!

by on Apr. 1, 2010 at 6:42 PM
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Replies (1-10):
by on Apr. 1, 2010 at 6:44 PM

 Who are the parents and who is paying for the ortadonture work?  His friends or you?

by on Apr. 1, 2010 at 6:46 PM

I've had the same argument with my 15 year old. He's been out of braces for almost 2 years, but still has to wear the retainers at night. I threatened to have the permanent retainers put in at HIS expense...he came around after that, lol. He just needs to know that his braces were not cheap, and not wearing his retainers is not an option.

I will say, if his retainers are hurting him, you need to take them back to the dentist. They may need to be adjusted. They shouldn't hurt. My son hates wearing his because they give him a very pronounced lisp.

by on Apr. 1, 2010 at 7:12 PM

Understood.  Thanks for you prompt reply!  Wow!  I like this site! : 0)

by on Apr. 1, 2010 at 7:15 PM

Thanks for the advice Mom2the boys.  The dentist office just said they may need to be adjusted if they're tight. (which they aren't)  I never thought to have them adjusted if they hurt.  After 2 years of painful braces, I just assumed the retainers were part of the "torture".  I should have called the dentist.  DUH!  Thanks again!

by on Apr. 1, 2010 at 7:16 PM

I was told the same thing. But after having the tin grill for two years, the last thing I wanted to do was to keep on looking like a dork. The ortho hygenist told me that they say that because there is a higher chance of losing your retainer in the first 6 months and your gums and roots of teeth are soft. She said wear them every single night for a year. After that when you feel pressure on your teeth or your gums to put them on at night maybe some days, for a couple of days. Remind him that it is not his body's norm to have straight teeth. Nature wants to put them back the way they were. Once he feels pressure, to put that retainer in, if not then he will have ugly teeth again and you ain't paying for that again. The hygenist says it takes months for them to shift enough to where the retainer won't fit. I only wore them at night, and still do. I wore the original one for a decade. The dentist thought I was a freak. I am still wearing the second set. He will be fine. . . .

big smile mini

by on Apr. 1, 2010 at 7:20 PM

Tell him if he doesn't wear his retainer, his teeth will move back out of place. That is what happened to me. I spent four years in braces for nothing, and it was all because I refused to wear my retainer. Trust me, I would much rather have dealt with the hassle of wearing my reatainer for 6 months, and then just at night. Now I have to deal with constantly having pain in my jaw, because my teeth are moving back to where they were before I had braces. All that pain he had with the braces, he will have without braces if he doesn't wear his retainer.

by Ruby Member on Apr. 1, 2010 at 7:54 PM

Dan (49) got braces as an adult. He wears a retainer when he sleeps. He has perfect teeth.  

My daughter Caity got braces as a kid...nobody told us about permanent retainers, wished they had.....she wore hers only at night, but in her sleep would always flip it out of her mouth. Now at 27, she has crooked bottom teeth.

by on Apr. 1, 2010 at 8:19 PM

I wore braces for 6 years, and when I wore a retainer, I only wore it at night.  If his teeth start moving, all he has to do is get the retainer adjusted and wear it more isn't really a big deal.

by on Apr. 1, 2010 at 8:23 PM

He should wear them as the ortho ordered, but I speak from experience...they really do hurt. I had very large retainers that didn't fit correctly. It's been almost 3 years since I had them taken off, and my teeth haven't shifted (I rarely wore my retainers...they would fall out when I'd sleep and either I'd begin to gag, or I'd lose them in my bed. They also gave me a HORRIBLE lisp, to the point where you couldn't understand me)

by on Apr. 1, 2010 at 8:51 PM

Thank you all for your help!  It's so nice to have a place to go and discuss things with others.  This is my first day, and my first post, on here and I am impressed!

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