Hello, my name is Youngsam Kim, a dentist who loves to do wisdom teeth extractions.
Let me briefly explain first how I became the wisdom tooth guru. In South Korea, wisdom tooth extractions are very affordable. When I opened my own practice in 2002, a third molar extraction with the highest degree of surgical difficulty cost $30~40, merely 1/100 of the cost of a dental implant in the same area. This is because basic dental care is a publicly funded health service in South Korea, and when a dental treatment is considered a part of publicly funded care, it is illegal to charge the patient any more than what is outlined in the government fee schedule. This had led to many dentists to avoid providing third molar extractions in favor of more productive procedures. When I first started practicing, I considered myself to be mediocre in all other procedures, so I started to see third molar patients that others refused to treat. As much as a half of my daily consisted of third molar extractions, averaging 20th a day, from 100 teeth in a slow month to more than 300~400 in a busier month. from 100 teeth in a slower month to more than 300~400 in a busier month. According to government records, I have extracted the most wisdom teeth in South Korea for the past 17 years. The more wisdom teeth I extracted, the better and faster I became, and the bigger my passion grew; and several years ago, I started writing columns and giving lectures on third molar extractions. As implants grew quite popular in South Korea, there was this newly stirred up interest in third molar extractions as well, which, in turn, made me quite famous as an expert in the field. Interestingly, since providing third molar extractions are much better compensated in other countries, my book and courses received even more attention and demand abroad. So with gratitude, here I am translating my book into English.
In South Korea, where implants are already quite popular, more than 80% of dentists place their own implants these days. In other countries, the proportion may be less, but I believe that it will eventually reach the comparable level, and this will naturally increase the demand for dentists around the world to perform extractions themselves including third molars. I have noticed that most dentists who extract third molars routinely tend to think that they are quite good at what they do, perhaps because at the end of the day, the teeth are all out and the patients all survive.
This may explain the overall lack of resources and platforms available for dentists to learn and improve on this particular topic. In my opinion, however, successful third molar extractions or any other extractions should involve more than just the physical removal of teeth. They should also be performed in a way that is as atraumatic and minimally invasive as possible, so that the patient’s post-operative discomfort is minimized. This book outlines the techniques and skills I have developed through-out my career to achieve the goals of "Easy, Simple, Safe, and Efficient" while also being atraumatic and minimally invasive. I strongly believe that these principles will also allow you to perform all surgical procedures more efficiently and predictably.