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Wisdom Tooth Removal in Korea: My Experience

Recently, I visited the dentist for a wisdom tooth removal. Now, I have almost completely recovered. In this article, I will talk about my experience and give some recommendations to make this process more comfortable.

Background

During the summer I was at home in Russia and just went to the dentist for my annual checkup. But she recommended doing an x-ray of my jaw to check if I need to remove my wisdom teeth. Unfortunately, the lower teeth did not grow straight. So, I needed to do the removal. I removed one tooth before coming to Korea. However, due to the long healing period, I did not have time to do the same with the second one, so I had to do it in Korea.

Before Tooth Extraction

What should be done before tooth extraction? First, check if you have insurance that covers the cost of dental procedures. In my case, I had to pay the full cost because my insurance does not cover dental procedures. I found out that you need to separately apply for this kind of insurance and pay for it. However, the costs will not be covered immediately. I needed to pay upfront and receive a refund, but only after some time.

Secondly, if you do not know Korean, then find out in advance if there is a coordinator or dentist who speaks English. I went to the clinic without English-speaking staff, I have an intermediate level of Korean. Although I didn’t understand everything completely, in general, I was able to understand even without the help of an interpreter. It was enough for me to understand what I needed to do.

Thirdly, be sure to read the reviews about the clinic and the doctors. Usually, clinic reviews can be found on Naver Maps or Kakao Maps. Also, check if there is a dentist who specializes specifically in the removal of wisdom teeth because the course of the operation and the speed of healing depend on this.

Finally, if you have X-rays that you, for example, took in your home country, then take them with you. This way, you can save some money.

About my surgery

First, they entered my data into the database. I provided them with my ID card (ARC), name, and phone number. They said that I needed to do an x-ray, but I had my own with me, so I saved money.

After that, everything went as expected. They put local anesthesia. Then, they began to remove it. They had to drill something, apparently because of the position of the tooth. The only thing that really stood out was that during the whole process, a piece of fabric was put on my face. So, I couldn’t see anything. This happens in all clinics in Korea, for most surgical procedures.

Within 15 minutes it was all over. After the removal, they put something plastic in place of the tooth, and my jaw could not close completely. I was told to remove it after 2 hours. They gave me an ice pack to apply to my cheek.

I was prescribed three types of pills that I needed to take for three days. I was able to buy them at the pharmacy opposite the clinic. In total, I spent 133,000 Won on tooth extraction and 9,000 Won on pills.

Conclusion

In Korean, wisdom teeth are called 사랑니 (sarangni), which literally means love tooth. They call it that because these teeth appear around the age when a person first falls in love. And this tooth hurts just like first love. Let’s visit the dentist regularly so that our teeth will be fine. I hope that nobody will have to experience pain due to their love teeth – or first love.

Click Here for information on a recommended dental clinic in Apgujeong, Seoul. Or, if you are in Busan, you can Click Here.