My Braces Review – Part 3 – Extractions

You can read the other parts of my Braces Review here: Part 1Part 2Part 4Part 5Part 6Part 7 & Part 8

Review on my Condition

My appointment with Dr. Wee from The Oral Maxillofacial Practice was at 1.00pm, so I had to fast from 9.00am onwards for four hours as I opted for sedation. Had a heavy breakfast so that I could last until afternoon.

Dr. Wee inspected my teeth and commented that since I was to remove my bottom right wisdom tooth, the top right wisdom tooth will have to go too. He explained that teeth work in pairs, and if I were to remove only the bottom tooth, the top one will grow longer and cut into my cheek. So in total, I had to remove six teeth – two wisdom teeth and four pre-molars. SIX!!! Even though I appeared super calm and simply nodded my head, lots of thoughts were swimming around, such as…

“How am I going to eat with six teeth less?”
“Will I bleed excessively?”
“Will it be very painful?”
“Can I even speak properly?”
“How do I go out with so many gaps in my teeth looking like a bo geh?”

I know I can’t back out now because I’ve already paid $535 at Alfred Cheng Orthodontic Clinic. I do want my perfect pearlies so I have to get this done no matter what! And next, Dr. Wee began to clarify the costs of the procedure (more info at end of post) so I had to pay attention to the calculations. He also explained that it’s good for me to do this while I’m still (relatively) young, since the risks increase along with age. I signed a declaration form and we’re ready for the extractions!

Inside the Surgery Room

I was led to the surgery room for the procedure. Sat down and the nurse began dressing me up with a disposable gown and tucked my hair into a disposable cap. It sure felt like I was undergoing some major operation and didn’t help in calming my nerves. The anesthetist came and introduced himself. Then they started poking needles in preparation for my anesthesia. After the drug was administered, I was knocked out in three breaths.

After the Surgery

Resting After Extraction Surgery

I woke up about 1.5 hours later and found myself lying on a recliner with curtains drawn around me. I was still very groggy and decided I should just lay there for a while more.

Anesthesia For Extraction Surgery

Looked around and found my hand with this. It’s for the anesthesia. I was biting on to gauze in my mouth and it was overflowing with both blood and saliva. Some blood dripped down onto my top and I had to soak it with Dynamo for two nights before the stubborn stain would budge. Hence, I would strongly advise wearing black so you wouldn’t need to worry about blood stains. I dug around my bag for tissue and ended up finding the item below. Warning: It’s not a pleasant sight so please be prepared.

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Extracted Teeth

My six teeth! The bottom wisdom tooth was all smashed up so it’s just bits and pieces left. Imagine the shock I had when I found this in my bag. Yes, they dropped this packet of teeth into my bag and I wasn’t informed about it. Eww…

I laid there for a while more until a nurse came to remove the thing on my hand and changed the gauze in my mouth. She offered a mask and I gladly wore it. Went out to the reception area where Marcus was patiently waiting for me. You’ll need to have someone bring you home for safety reasons.

After Surgery Care

I was given painkillers, antibiotics and medicine for swelling. I took the painkillers only on the day of surgery after heading home and finished both the antibiotics and medicine for swelling. Fortunately, I didn’t experience much pain nor swelling. I am very thankful for this!

Pearlie White Chlor-Rinse Mouthwash

I bought a small toothbrush and brushed my teeth gently, taking care to avoid the gaps. I also rinsed my mouth gently with the mouthwash the clinic gave me (picture above). Anyway, I got the mouthwash from the clinic at $12 and found the exact same mouthwash at Watsons for only $5.50! Heart pain. I could have gotten two bottles and still have $1 left to buy McDonald’s ice cream.

Payment Terms

The bill came up to a hefty $2,000. $800 was covered by Medisave and I paid for the remaining $1,200. Another $300 would be covered by Medisave as well but that would require a few weeks to process and I will receive a cheque for it.

I was given one week MC and will need to return for a review appointment one week after the surgery.

Thank goodness, I SURVIVED!!! Can’t wait to put on braces and begin tidying up my teeth.

UPDATE (Nov 2013):
I have received several queries on how did my extractions bill come up to $2,000, so here’s the approximate breakdown of the bill.
• General anesthesia: $700
• Professional fee for surgery: $1,150
• Medication: $50
• Mouthwash: $12
• 7% GST
Please don’t be alarmed by my bill as the amount would vary according to the type and number of teeth you are extracting. The bulk of my bill goes to general anesthesia and surgery fee, which is due to the wisdom tooth extraction. If you’re going for just normal extraction of pre-molars, it would be only $60 per tooth. Hope this helps! 😉

Carin Poo

Hello! I grew up reading blogs, and now, blogging lets me share the love around. I offer a glimpse into my simple life, and maybe you can find a different perspective of the things I enjoy. My cat says Hi! :)

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  • Alvin

    Hi there! May I know what’s the actual cost for extraction of 1 premolar? Thanks!

    • Hi Alvin! So sorry for the late reply. With referral from Dr. Alfred Cheng, it costs $60 for extraction of one pre-molar. Hope this helps and thank you for reading! 🙂

  • Hello James! So sorry for the late reply. I’ve been having problems receiving comment notifications.

    Yes, I knew beforehand that part of the bill would be covered by Medisave. When I was presented the bill, the receptionist told me that $813.79 would be covered by Medisave, but I don’t know how they got to this exact amount. I read from blogs and forums that others claimed from their Medisave too.

    Hope this helps and thank you for reading! 🙂

  • Sheryl

    What does the $2,071.1 include?

    • Hello Sheryl, it includes general anaesthesia (~$700), professional fee for surgery (~$1150), medication (~$50), mouthwash ($12), and 7% GST. The amount would vary according to type and number of teeth you are extracting. Hope this helps and thanks for reading! 😉

  • Sheryl

    So the whole process costs $5000++ since it includes extractions and all? 😮

    • Yes, ~$2,000 for extractions and $3,800 for braces. If you do not require wisdom tooth extraction, it will definitely be much cheaper. Extraction of normal teeth like pre-molars cost only $60 each. So it really depends on what type of teeth you are extracting.

  • shery

    how much is the extraction of one wisdom tooth?

    • Hi Shery!

      If I’m not wrong, I don’t think you can remove just one wisdom tooth. Teeth work in pairs and hence, if you remove one, the matching top or bottom tooth will have to be removed as well. I paid ~$2,000 for the extraction of my 2 right wisdom teeth and 4 pre-molars.

      However, I chose general anaesthesia and that also contributed significantly to the bill. Hence, the cost also depends on factors like your choice of anaesthesia.

      Here’s a rough guide for the cost: http://www.moh.gov.sg/content/moh_web/home/costs_and_financing/Dental_Fee_Info/Impacted_Wisdom_Tooth_Surgery_Per_Tooth.html

      Hope this helps and thanks for reading! 🙂

  • Gin

    What is included for medisave? Is anaesthesia included?

    • Hello Gin, if I’m not wrong, it is up to CPF to approve the sum claimed for Medisave. I’ve heard of cases whereby the entire bill was paid by Medisave, but mine was only partially covered by Medisave. Hence, I can’t give you a definite answer as to whether anaesthesia is included in Medisave or not as it is subject to approval.

      Thanks for reading! 🙂

  • Mylene Lim

    Hi can I check with you how to bite the cotton when u still asleep?

    • Hi Mylene, you don’t really need to clench and bite the cotton when asleep. As long as it stays put there to soak up blood, that is good enough. 🙂

      • Mylene Lim

        You choose the General anesthesia for your extraction or the dentist choose for u?

        • The dentist advised that as it involved extracting 6 teeth at one go. 🙂

          • Mylene Lim

            Hi Carin

            Does Dr Wee do filling before bonding the braces?

          • Nope, they don’t offer filling service.

          • Mylene Lim

            Huh? Mine got one teeth need filling and he also asked me to get it fill

          • Yup, you’ll have to go to another dentist to get it filled.

  • Hi Jess, yup you can put on braces right after removing stitches. I think it depends on your healing progress but 7 days should be enough for it to heal, remove stitches and put on braces. If you really can’t get your braces up by then, you can wear a mask to work? The pain will subside but you’ll be given painkillers anyway so don’t worry about it. All the best! 🙂