Let me begin by saying that I hate going to the dentist. I’ve been fortunate to have some excellent, understanding dentists in my life, and I’ve liked some of them very much, but I hate going to see them. I have post-traumatic stress disorder and getting dental work done causes significant anxiety for me.
Knowing that, you can imagine how much pain I was in on a recent Saturday morning when I bit into a protein bar and fractured the root on the one tooth in my mouth that was capped by a crown. Of course, I did not know at the time that I’d fractured the root. I just knew the tooth was suddenly very loose and very painful. So painful, in fact, that I immediately grabbed the phone book and started phoning dentists, pleading with someone to please, please, please see me that very day. Do you know how hard it is to find a dentist to see you the same day, especially on a Saturday?
I live in a rural area and there are not that many dentists around. I had no luck getting an appointment that day.
When I phoned Dr. Schmelzer, though, I was surprised that the dentist himself answered the phone. He said he was actually out of town, otherwise he would have seen me that day. He told me to call his office first thing Monday morning and they would get me in that day. He also advised me on how to care for the damaged tooth until then.
Well, I made it through the weekend and I did call first thing Monday morning and got an appointment that afternoon. I found the staff to be friendly and efficient and Dr. Schmelzer himself to be extremely personable. The first thing he asked me was, “How are you?” I said, “Fine,” and he said, “You don’t look fine,” recognizing at once how very anxious I was. He did his best to put me at ease, talking me through everything he was doing and encouraging me to focus on the pictures of a tropical beach on the ceiling above the dental chair. I won’t say I relaxed completely because, well, I was still at the dentist, but he and his staff did everything they could to minimize the stress of the experience.
It turned out the root of my tooth was fractured, requiring extensive dental services, including putting in a bridge. This, of course, is terrible news for someone that hates visiting the dentist. Since it was a necessity, however, I’m glad I was able to find a dentist I like, with convenient office hours and reasonable fees (a bridge is going to be expensive anywhere you go, unfortunately), that can see me quickly in an emergency and that is sensitive to the anxiety I experience when visiting the dentist.
Dr. J. B. Schmelzer’s dental office is located at 520 E. Center Street in Marion, Ohio.