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Feta's avatar

My parents won't let me get my wisdom teeth removed, what are my options for helping myself?

Asked by Feta (930points) February 5th, 2015 from iPhone

I’m 18 years old and my wisdom teeth have started to come in.
I’m in pain all day and from what I can feel the teeth are sideways and impacted.
I asked my dad if I could go to the dentist to have them looked at and possibly removed and he said no.

He says that because he still has all of his wisdom teeth, I don’t have to have mine removed.

We also don’t have insurance so that’s probably a major reason why he won’t let me see a dentist despite the fact that he went to the dentist himself earlier this year. My medical expenses are always put on the back burner.
I have thyroid disease and I haven’t had bloodwork done in over a year and I haven’t had a dental checkup since I was in middle school.

Is there anything I can do?

I don’t have the money to pay for a visit myself and my parents don’t have insurance and don’t care about my health anyway.

And before anyone asks, I live with my father, my mom isn’t financially stable, and I only just turned 18 a month ago so I still have to do as they say.

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19 Answers

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Do you have any dentistry schools near you? If you’re in pain something is not right.

Feta's avatar


Not to my knowledge. We live in a pretty secluded area in the mountains.

My parents know that the teeth are causing me pain. They just keep giving me pain killers.

tinyfaery's avatar

Be as annoying as you possibly can. Complain about it as often as you can. Say you can’t do chores because of the pain. Say you can’t eat because of the pain.

Hopefully, he’ll get the hint.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Second option: Some dentists offer free services at times. Can you check with a local dentist office?

longgone's avatar

You are probably in pain at school, aren’t you? Would a teacher be able to talk them into taking you to the dentist?

Feta's avatar


I have said that my teeth hurt for the past two weeks and my father just hands me two Advil.

My parents are the type of people that think they’re doctors and will help themselves before they help anyone else.
I do their receipts for their taxes and I found like 3 dentist receipts for various things and every time that I’ve mentioned that I need to see a dentist my dad just says, “I know, I wish I could afford to go myself.”

He’s a liar. He’s been multiple times for his own dental pain.

Cupcake's avatar

Don’t stop at being as annoying as you can at home… tell everyone at school too (are you still in high school?).

Tell the teachers, your counselor and the principal.

My son’s wisdom teeth grew in impacted and sideways. They would have caused a mouthful of damage had I insisted on them growing in.

Your parents are being medically negligent.

Feta's avatar

I suppose I could check but I doubt wisdom teeth removal will be free.
We do have a festival in April where you can get free dental care and they do remove teeth but they don’t use any form of anesthetic and they just stuff your mouth with gauze.

I would feel weird asking a teacher for help. I’m not really close with any of my teachers and the last time I asked another adult for help ( my counselor ) my parents told her I was a hypochondriac. My counselor has tried before to get my dad to take care of my medical needs and he just says no.
He doesn’t break…even for peer pressure or shaming.

And I would ask my counselor but since I’m no longer “suicidal” or a “brat” my parents said the appointments would be my expense and I can’t afford it so I’m not able to see her.

ibstubro's avatar

Make an appointment with a dentist for a consultation.
When you get in the chair, don’t let them take x-ray’s of anything until you see the dentist. When the dentist gets there, tell them that you’re just wanting to make sure that there is no permanent damage being done – that you are still in school and without funds and that your parent refuse to pay.

If there is a serious problem the dentist now has a moral obligation to see that you are relieved of your pain and that minimal permanent damage is done.

If you call and explain your situation, they may refuse you, but confronted with the fact, it’s a lot harder to turn away. It’s a healing profession.

Feta's avatar


It’s just foreign for me to do that.
My dad lost his job two years ago but he’s always had the money to pay for things like this. If he still had insurance I would just go myself.
Having to beg for medical care is just out of my element.

I was hoping there was something legal I could do to get some sort of funding or insurance for myself.

ibstubro's avatar

It’s not begging.
For all you know the dentist will tell you the same thing as your dad.
There’s nothing to say that he will do anything, but you’ll have a professional opinion as to how urgent the problem is. If you need critical care and the dentist contacts your father with that information, how can he refuse?

Honestly, what sort of “funding or insurance” do you think there is that is not a handout? There’s no magic wand that anyone here can wave that fixes your teeth or your father. You’re on the verge of being on your own…you need to learn to use all the tools available to keep yourself supplied with food, shelter, clothing and health.

Yes, wisdom teeth can wreck your other teeth and your health. Take one step toward resolving your problem.

what are my options for helping myself?

Feta's avatar


I understand that I need to take steps to solve my own problem but walking into a dentists office with them assuming that I’m going to be a paying customer and then guilting the dentist into checking out my teeth is deceit and I don’t feel comfortable doing that.

I used to know a woman that would tag along with me and my mother on my doctors visits as a child so she could get her baby examined by my doctor without paying for an appointment. Finally, the doctor told her it wasn’t appropriate to do that and she stopped coming but I’m reminded of that when I think of deceiving a dentist into looking at my wisdom teeth with me not having any intention to pay for it.

I just can’t do that.
And I didn’t know if there was any sort of help I could get, hence why I asked this question.
But what you suggested is not a handout. It’s not some sort of medical aid, it’s deceiving a medical professional under the guise that I’m going to pay for his service only to say at the end of the examination that I have no intention to pay.

janbb's avatar

If you are right about the pain you are in and your father’s refusal to treat it, he is being borderline abusive. Go to the school counselor and explain the situation; she should be able to help you get help or call in Child Protection Services if need be.

Darth_Algar's avatar

Are you interested in helping yourself, or are you interested in making excuses so that you won’t have to take responsibility for yourself? Frankly, so far it’s sounding like the latter. Go to the dentist, be seen by him, get his medical opinion. See what further work, if any, you need (whether you need further treatment he’s not going to do any significant work right off the bat). Explain your financial situation and see what kind of arrangements can be made. You’re an adult now, you no longer get to defer everything to your parents.

ibstubro's avatar


Dentists offer free exams.

It’s no more deceitful for you to get an exam knowing that you can’t pay than it is for the dentist to get you in there and tell you that you need $10,000 worth of work.

I repeat:
“There’s nothing to say that he will do anything, but you’ll have a professional opinion as to how urgent the problem is. If you need critical care and the dentist contacts your father with that information, how can he refuse?”

If you think turning your father into child protective services is a better way to go…

trailsillustrated's avatar

Tell your dad a dentist told you this: the longer you leave it, the worse it will get. Teeth form from the crown down, that means the roots probably aren’t fully formed, you are 18 so your bone is still fairly elastic. If you wait, you are possibly looking at a more extensive procedure to remove them, and an infection which is in your head, the mouth is in the head, which is a bad place to have an infection because it’s near your brain. Your upper molars are near your sinuses, an infection can travel through these into your brain and spinal cord. Now get yourself to the nearest dental school for a reduced rate appointment. Present your case, you are only 18, and in terrible pain. Good luck to you.

Zaku's avatar

What!? I’m under the impression that dental pain is considered a medical emergency, and 18-year-olds are considered adults for most purposes.

Children don’t have exactly their parents’ mouths or teeth, so his wisdom teeth are irrelevant.

It’s foolish both for your well-being and for expense purposes to put it off. Some wisdom teeth can also be removed by pulling rather than expensive surgery, but I’d say you should go to the dentist and find out in any case. You could find one who gives a free exam, and discuss options.

Maybe figure out if there are any reasonable people whom your dad listens to, and start making plans for independence from him as soon as possible.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

What about signing up for state insurance?

Other than that, if I were you, I wouldn’t feel badly about trying to get free advice – or even free services. America’s healthcare system, including dentistry, is so overpriced that it’s morally reprehensible. I completely understand you not wanting to feel deceitful, but I would seriously consider taking some of the advice you’re being offered.

If you’re in pain, there’s something wrong and not just because they’re growing in. Mine were growing in at 18, impacted, but I was never in a lot of pain because of it. (I have to see an oral surgeon to have mine removed now). Without insurance, you’re looking at anywhere from $900 (which is actually very low) to $1,300 per wisdom tooth unless you do something like @ibstubro suggested. On top of that, you could have an infection, it could be hitting bone, or who knows what else, but any of them could put you in the hospital. Without insurance, there’s no way you could pay an ER bill.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

You are 18, get that shit taken care of. Thyroid also. Neither are anything to mess with. My father and mother still have theirs and mine had to come out so that’s no excuse not to have them done. You can negotiate with your dentist and probably get on a payment plan. You probably also qualify for some kind of insurance since you don’t have any.

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