HELP- my son is pulling out his own teeth

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New Member
my son has been doing the latest thing of pulling his teeth out.

i have yet to dig in the forum archives and actually a little to tired to at this moment.

just a quick background-
well he is getting ready to live with me here in europe- currently he lives with his father and stepmother, along with 3 sisters ( 1 real age 15, 1 half age 10 and 1 step age 13) and an teenager aged aunt ( his stepmother's sister- she is 15).
we made the decision that it is best for him to have a structure household- my current husband and i do not have children- therefore it will be better for him- okay that is it in a nutshell.

on the doctors- they are baffled. he currently pulled 2 teeth out while in school- he just turned 13- he is delayed. but he just pulls them out.

then he pulled out 3 more in the past few weeks.
we are concerned because now he is missing more teeth and he does need braces for other issues, however we are in the stage of- paying for something he is just going to remove or him causing more damage by doing something with them. we thought of false teeth or implants- but i wonder if he would rip those out.

his teeth are drifting now. so we are really concerned. we just never heard of a child doing that to themselves, so very curious if it is all do to his disorder

at one time they thought he had asperger's- but ruled that out just recently.

i will be moving him here in may and plan on having him totally re-evaluation- since his father and stepmum have had some issues on his diagnosis.

i am really really concerned about this pulling out his own teeth, i mean that has to hurt- and i am worried about whatever damage this may cause to his gums and mouth.

by the way- when he was asked why he did it- he said because they were bothering him???? i am so at a lose


New Member
I never heard of that before, but I found this on the web.

It is about an impulse disorder where kids pull out hair. The therapy is called habit reversal training.

They are saying that people who have this sometimes also have anxiety and depression.

I wonder if this is also a type of impulse disorder. I sure hope that you can get some help for him and have some good psychiatrists there.

I am also wondering if it could possible that he might be on too high a dose of some medications. My son had been on too much stimulants at one time and was rubbing and picking off his skin. It looked pretty horrible!


Well-Known Member
Welcome! Glad you found us. Way to go researching before your son gets to your home.

I have not heard of this pulling out of teeth. I do believe him, they bother him. We take for granted not being aware of our teeth. I recall being in pain anytime my mother cut my finger nails. She said there should be no pain - but there was for me. To this day I think I feel finger nail sensations that other do not.

Why did dad and stepmom not feel comfortable with diagnosis?
Is he on any medications?
What about school help?


Mom? What's a difficult child?
I could not find anything either except the same thing as Oceans- but I did find this article on a dental site about pulling out your teeth- Sorry I hope you find some answers.

"The subject of Pulling Your Own Teeth has rarely been so easy to understand. Even though it may sound very odd and downright compelling, a lot of people actually try to extract their own teeth. Toothache pain can be very painful and very frustrating, making you try anything to get relief. Depending on how bad the pain is, youll be more than willing to do just about anything you can to get the pain to stop. Abscesses or really bad cavities are among the worst, as the pain never seems to let up no matter what you do.
In the old days, teeth were extracted by pliers, as there were no dentists around. During these times, people would get drunk on alcohol and then the teeth would be extracted. There was no such thing as anaesthesia back then, so it was impossible to locally numb the pain. These days though, local anaesthesia is the best way to numb a toothache before pulling the tooth. If you attempt to pull a tooth yourself, youll feel the pain no matter what you do.
There are situations however, in which you can pull your own teeth. Baby teeth for example, are acceptable to pull. Before you yank it out though, you should check on the age of when the tooth in question should be removed. If you wiggle the tooth around and it appears to be loose, then chances are it will come out without a problem. On the other hand, if you pull the tooth and it turns out to be an abscess, youll end up with a real problem and your hands and youll need to visit a dentist as soon as you can.
Another situation in which it is acceptable to pull your own teeth is when you have a severe case of gum disease. Gum disease can cause the socket and the bone to become extremely decayed, which will result in the destruction of the tooth. If the gum disease is severe enough, the tooth will be extremely loose and will come out without a problem. In some cases, the tooth can be almost unbearable to the touch. If you have gum disease and notice a loose tooth, you should be careful when pulling it. If you dont do it properly or if you do it too soon, you could end up breaking the top of the tooth. If this happens, youll need to go to the dentist to have the remaining portion of the tooth cut out.
Even though a tooth may feel loose when you touch it, doesnt always mean that you can grab a pair of pliers and rip it out. Teeth are very delicate. If you try to rip a tooth out with pair of pliers and make a mistake, you should end up doing more harm than good. Putting pliers in your mouth can also lead to an infection, which would send you to the dentist. Abscesses on the other hand, should never be dealt with on your own youll need to go to a dentist to have him properly extract the tooth and give you some antibiotics to stop the infection.
The writer of this article makes Pulling Your Own Teeth more accessible to the average reader than most writers.
To be on the safe side and avoid any potential problems that could easily arise, you should always go to the dentist if you have a toothache. No matter how bad the pain may be, you should never attempt to pull the tooth yourself. Your dentist can numb the area before he pulls the tooth, so youll feel no pain at all. He will also prescribe you some pain medicine and antibiotics as well, to help treat any infection you may have. If you attempt to pull the tooth yourself, youll only cause more problems in the end and end up going to a dentist anyway."


Well-Known Member
This is the 13-year old, right? And I am assuming that there is no abcess or any other condition so painful that he did this out of desperation?

I don't want to sound like an alarmist here, but I would be EXTREMELY concerned if this were my child! This is self-mutilation carried to an almost unbelievable degree! It almost sounds like something out of a Stephen King novel! To pull out your own healthy teeth has got to be unbelievably painful - something most people would never even be capable of doing! And he just casually says that they were "bothering him"? I'm sorry, but I think you have a lot more to worry about here than just his teeth "drifting" and getting braces!

Please, please, PLEASE, do not walk - <u>RUN</u> - to get this boy some very serious help, just as soon as you can, before this goes any further!


Active Member
were they baby (deciduous) teeth? I do not believe he would eaily be able to pull out adult teeth. I have worked at dental offices since 1971.

Hound dog

Nana's are Beautiful
Welcome to the board.

I'm just going to jump right in here. Teeth pulling is pretty unusual. You had him checked for autism. But have you had him evaled for schizophrenia?

I saw in your sig about your brother being diagnosed with it. While it's not necessarily considered gentic, it does seem to "cluster" in families. I know because it has affected 3 of my own family members. I don't know if psychiatrist would be willing to diagnosis at difficult child's age. But although most of the info states that onset is commonly in the 20's, families note behavior long before that, sometimes all the way back thru childhood.

Just a thought. I understand your concern and worry. I think I'd be frantic knowing my child was doing this and not knowing how to prevent or stop it. Like someone else said, it takes alot of power to pull and adult tooth. It hurts during and after, enough that we take medications not to feel it. Yet he's just pulling them out.

I hope you can get some help and answers quickly.



New Member
as parents we are already running to doctors on this one. the doctors in the US are baffled to say the least.

me personally i am freaking out. hence why i decided to join and post this problem.

as the comment on the teeth drifting...we are also concerned about his LONG TERM health as well. we really dont know what to do. we need to FIX both problems. mental and dental.

i will just see what the doctors will have to say when he comes out here.

i already have an eeg lined up with my nuero doctor, once my son is out here. it is a slow start


New Member
i have been pushing on the schizophrenia diagnosis- since his behaviors mimic alot of the male side of my family.
the doctors in the US do not want to "label" him- wtf?? who cares about my son.
they ruled out autism- but i still have my doubts.

that is what we dont understand about the pulling has to hurt. :grrr: so why is he doing it.


New Member
Why did dad and stepmom not feel comfortable with diagnosis? we have had over the years run arounds with doctors and hospitals. we have pushed for certain treatments ( we actually have been dealing with his since he started school) even long term care in the hospital. part of the problem is insurance issues. which for me i have cigna international 100% coverage on most things- but most of it has been doctor issues. it is the whole thing of them not wanting to label him- :grrr: i dont care about labels for blank sake. i care about my son and want him to have a normal life if he can in the future. i dont want him to end up like my brother or my father.
Is he on any medications? i dont have the list to give you exacts ( i am actually replying to these inbetween appointments myself.) i do know off the top of my head. seroquel, concerta ( ritalin- makes him manic) a medication to help him not pee his pants- that is a whole other issue. trazadone and i think i am missing one or two-sorry it is hard for me to remember when i dont adminster the medications on a daily basics yet.
What about school help? the schools in texas have been good off and on. they just moved to entire new area and the school there well...we keep a daily notebook of his behavior and goings on to be passed between the teachers ( it helps us parents work with his doctors on issues) he has been in trouble at school for stealing things from students and teachers. he stabbed a girl with a pencil the last november which lead him into long term care for around a month- he has fixation issues. he does have an IEP for some Special Education classes- his actual grade level he is behind one year. he also had to repeat a year in elementary school. he is currently in 6th grade
i already spoke to the DoDDs school system here. the school here is more like a private school. also the doctors and the school work together as a team- he will actually be seen at the school for some of his medical, since they have a teen clinic at the schools here. there is also programs for him that i can enroll him into. i am currently on standby on some things, since he is not here in germany yet. however the people here have been so great on helping me. because honestly this is the first time i have to deal with all the school and medical issues. my kids have lived with thier father since my divorce with him ( another long story- short story my father at the time was threating to kill me and take my kids and blah blah- so i had some major PTSD going on- my ex was in the army at the time on- we had lived on a base that was secure- so i left my kids there because i knew my father would not be able to get on post- and i basically checked myself in because i was a mess- long story short)
i am going to stress on getting him re-evaluation when he gets here.
one really good thing is i know some of the teachers- including one of the Special Education teachers that will be teaching him- so that makes me feel better and a little more of a keepin an eye on him.


Active Member
I am sorry, I don't have much to add to what everyone else says. I wanted to say welcome...Also, one other thing, you really should remove your last name. Just for your safety. Again, adding my welcome!



New Member
we are thinking it may be part of his impulsivness- i just know when the last teeth were pulled his pysh doctor- said take him to a denist.

all of my children have very good dental care throughout their life, so just the off chance of it being something like a loose tooth- it is not possible. or even cavity- they have check ups all the time- they even have the special plasitc coating on the teeth to help prevent cavities.
acutally we a little dental anal- when it comes to the kids, because us adults did not get much dental care as kids ( especially me)


New Member
:smile: thank you everyone who is posting..i am overwelm it actually put tears into my eyes. i can not believe the support. and honestly i will pass this support on to my ex-hubby too.
i can not thank you all enough.

timer lady

Queen of Hearts

Take some deep breaths - this is a long journey; many times only a few steps can be taken on any given day, week or month.

Sort out your concerns - first priority & head down the list. What is the first item you'd like addressed with psychiatrist, therapist, school, etc. The psychiatrist really will need to take the lead in the entire treatment plan.

For us here, school/academics became a non-issue until the tweedles were more stable & therefore ready/able to learn. It was more coping skills & self calming.

I would hazard to guess that stability (no further self harm) would be the highest priority.

Please remove your last name for privacy issues.

Again welcome - this is a long journey of many small steps.


Active Member
Hi Sandra and welcome. I gather from your mention of DODDS schools that your husband and/or you are military? If this is the case, please ensure that the sponsor is enrolled in the program (specific to each military branch) so that you don't get transferred to a base/post where there is little to no medical/mental health care.

My husband is retired Air Force and we experienced the DODDS schools in Korea, Japan and Spain and the school systems were wonderful. However, the medical care was often non-existent. Take care.


Well-Known Member
That's bizarre and I really have no advice other than to make sure he sees a Psychiatrist (with the MD) when he gets back and I also recommend a neuropsychologist evaluation.
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