Making my daughter headgear braces permanent

8 answers /

Last post: 21/01/2024 at 12:13 am

Valerie H(112)
15/01/2024 at 1:49 am

So my daughter is now 16 (17 in june) and started wearing braces 6 months ago. Two month ago she got headgear to wear with her braces. The headgear consists of a facebow and has straps around the neck and over the head that hold it in place, it is called combination headgear.

She is supposed to wear the Headgear 18 hours a day. The treatment should last around 3 years in total, of which the headgear should be worn for 1 to 2 years.

So the current problem is that it doesn't work at all. I could still understand that she didn't want to wear the headgear to school and that 18 hours was therefore rather not possible, so I insisted that she wear the headgear all the time when she was at home, ideally all day on the weekend to make up for lost time during the week. But she wears it very inconsistently, sometimes not even at night. I've talked about it so many times how important it is and the orthodontist also noticed and mentioned it at the last appointment, she's just very unreasonable, it's tense, it looks bad, she's embarrassed to go out with it.

At the last appointment, the orthodontist told me that it was possible to wire the Facebow into the mouth so that my daughter could not remove the Facebow from her mouth. I mentioned this option at home and threatened to have it done if she didn't wear the headgear as prescribed.

It has now been 2 weeks since the appointment and unfortunately my daughter's discipline has not improved. So today I called the orthodontist and asked for an appointment to wire in the headgear (i.e. the Facebow). When I told my daughter this she got angry and wanted me to cancel the appointment and why don't I trust her? I can't trust her at the moment, even during our discussion she didn't have the headgear in and I just want the discussion to end. The headgear will now be wired in for 6 months, after which we will see whether my daughter is more disciplined

Have I gone too far? I only want the best for her

19/01/2024 at 6:53 pm

I work in an orthodontic department at an NHS hospital. Kids have autonomy over their treatment and can even refuse treatment no matter the age. The parents have no say. 16 year olds can consent or not to their own treatment. I'm surprised your daughter is going along with the treatment at all. Sounds like she's just wasting everyone's time.

KELLY R(754)
Kelly R(754)
19/01/2024 at 7:01 pm

I completely understand why she doesn’t want to wear it, neither would I. She’s old enough to understand the consequences of not wearing it, so personally I would leave it to her to decide. Still encourage her to wear it each day at home but I think having it attached is a bit extreme. Assuming there is no medical reason for needing it wired in then it’s purely cosmetic. In my opinion, the impact on her confidence etc is likely to be bigger than the benefit she will gain from having it wired. It’s just my personal opinion and I can understand your rationale for the decision but it’s a very delicate age where peer opinion, words etc can have a huge impact.

KIM S(866)
Kim S(866)
19/01/2024 at 7:43 pm

You sound very controlling. Although I note your concerns it is your daughters decision, not yours!

Belinda M(4)
20/01/2024 at 7:32 am

In all honesty this sounds quite extreme! Your daughter really ought to be able to make an informed decision for herself at this age and you should respect her decision.

I understand your concern for her and that you as an adult have the foresight to see its better to do this now rather than later in life (unless there's some kind of medical reason for it) I'm assuming this is just for cosmetic reasons so maybe if the orthodontist has a serious talk with your daughter and let her weigh up how much her teeth affect her confidence compared with how much the head gear will impact her at this delicate time in her life? And maybe they can explain to her what the options and costs are likely to be if she decides not to go ahead now and picks treatment up in the future if her appearance is still bothering her.

If you try to force her she's likely to push back from you so maybe you could help her make her own decision and show her some support? It's such a tricky time being a teenager isn't it, even though they fight and argue with you for their independence they still need to feel you're always on their team supporting them all the way.

All the best hope you can work it out for the best :)

LUCY S(1294)
Lucy S(1294)
20/01/2024 at 9:02 am

Please don’t go through with the appointment. Talk to your daughter about the consequences of not wearing her headgear, explain if she isn’t going to wear it properly the braces might as well come off as it won’t work properly- then leave her to make up her own mind and respect her decision. If you’re paying privately for this then just stop and let her get it removed as she’s not using it as she’s supposed to. Getting something wired in that she doesn’t want to sounds like a violation.

Is there an alternative to headgear? I’m super shocked this is still a thing in 2023, perhaps the fastest cure is headgear but I would never have worn this as 16- seems really extreme.


Heard the latest?

Stay in the loop with our daily NEWS email

I have read and understood Netmums' Privacy Notice and Terms & Conditions

Kirk P(2)
20/01/2024 at 12:58 pm

Why is it so important to you that your daughter wears these braces? Why is she wearing them at all? Is it cosmetic, or is there a real medical reason for them?

It's obviously not that important to her, and they are, after all, her teeth. And it's her that has to wear the braces, not you.

The best response to this situation right from the start would have been to say to your daughter "ok, if you don't want to wear them, don't wear them," and let her live with the consequences, if any.

That's regardless of how old she is, but especially now she's old enough to drink alcohol on licensed premises, get married, leave school, get a job...

21/01/2024 at 12:13 am

I would leave it she will be bullied and unhappy

Can't find your answer?

Netmums Newsletters

Yes, please! I want the best parenting news around

*By signing up you accept Netmums' Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions.