Children Success Stories

Children Success Stories


healthy smile healthy child Can dental care really make that big of a difference? See what these children say…

Jose Barrios

From age twelve and into his adulthood, Jose Barrios has been provided care from longtime Healthy Smile Healthy Child Volunteer Dentist, Dr. Justin Tripp. With an extra tooth that was fused to another tooth, Jose’s case wasn’t an easy one and ended up requiring treatment from an entire team. Dr. Tripp stayed with Jose every step of the way as he was introduced to Oral Surgeon, Dr. Troy Savant, and Orthodontists, Dr. Adam Welmerink and Dr. David Welmerink, all of whom have been an integral part of what Jose calls a “life changing experience.” Today, with a “new, clean smile,” Jose says he has more confidence. He recalls his mother telling him from a very young age that he had to take care of himself and never get hurt because he didn’t have insurance. Because of the dedication and generosity of all of these volunteer dental providers, Jose didn’t have to worry about the insurance factor and was given a healthy smile that has inspired him to become a neurosurgeon and help others in need. He started classes at Truckee Meadows Community College this fall and we couldn’t be happier for him!

Delayza De Luna

Dalayza De Luna is a 4-year-old who attends Esther Bennett Elementary School. While Dalayza initially had medical insurance when first reaching out to Healthy Smile Healthy Child (HSHC), like many, she did not have dental coverage and her family could not afford to pay out of pocket for dental care. She eventually lost her private medical coverage, as her family could no longer afford it, and while they applied for Medicaid/NV Check Up, she did not qualify. HSHC placed Dalayza with Volunteer Dentist from The Smile Shop, Dr. Whitney Garol, who determined she needed extensive restorative treatment that would need to be performed under general anesthesia. Dr. Garol was willing to provide her services at no cost, however, Dalayza’s family still faced hospital and anesthesia fees totaling over $17K.  HSHC coordinated financial assistance for Dalayza through Renown Health’s Financial Assistance Program, which helped drop the hospital and anesthesia fees to less than $1K. Dalayza’s case is one example of many, where families aren’t able to afford private insurance, but do not qualify for any state assistance because their income is slightly too high. We couldn’t be happier with the collaboration between HSHC, Renown Health and Dr. Garol to help Dalayza and her family get the care she needed at a price her family could afford.

William Krall

Hello, I am William Krall and on behalf of my family and myself… Thank you to Northern Nevada Dental Health Programs, and all the doctors that participate in the programs: Dr. Logan Smith, Dr. Scott Boyden and Champagne Family Dentistry for all they did to make a difference in a painful moment in my life.

On Thursday, January 30, 2014 I woke up with a lot of pain.  My mom called the school to report my absence and she was asked by the school nurse to call Northern Nevada Dental Health Programs for help. Instead of spending all day at the ER and a week or more out of school, NNDHP with the cooperation of Dr. Logan Smith, saw me REAL fast. Dr. Logan saw right away after the exam that a molar needed to be PULLED immediately. It had caused a LARGE abscess under and around my left cheek and eye.

As I left Dr. Logan’s office NNDHP reached out to Dr. Scott Boyden to help. His office replied very quickly and Dr. Boyden could see me right away and got my tooth OUT!

I realize that the quick actions of everyone involved are not normal, yet greatly appreciated. To our great relief NNDHP located help for us financially for the medicine needed as well. After the weekend I was ready to go back to school and learn, with only a two days absent and minimal loss of time in class. High school is too important to miss. The following Friday NNDHP called my mom and asked her to get me to Champagne Family Dentistry on Saturday, February 8 for fillings, treatment and cleaning. Due to Champagne’s schedule an opportunity was available and they also treated another filling on the lower part of my jaw and applied sealants to my teeth after a good cleaning. They were VERY nice.

I am happy to be smiling again and pain free. Thank you to NNDHP and all who make this program possible. I learned a lot about volunteering through my family but this is the first time I realized how important programs like this are to the community. Your generosity and help make a very large impact on children and families from all walks of life at a critical stage in education and development.

Again, I cannot thank you enough for your help and continued support of NNDHP and other groups like this.


Cesar Benites

Seven-year-old Cesar Benites came to Healthy Smile Healthy Child (HSHC) in pain and unable to afford dental care. He needed extractions, several fillings, crowns and a space maintainer. He was immediately seen as an emergency patient by Volunteer Dentist Dr. Gilbert Trujillo. Thereafter, Volunteer Dentist Dr. Trent Gookin took over the case. Due to Cesar’s age and the amount of treatment he needed, Cesar had to be placed under general anesthesia. Luckily for Caesar, Anesthesiologist Dr. Bryan Horgan agreed to provide his anesthesia in Dr. Gookin’s dental office rather than at the hospital. This drastically minimized the patient portion cost for Caesar’s treatment (average cost in an outpatient hospital setting would have been over $17K!). Thanks to HSHC and the collaboration and generosity of the volunteer dentists and Dr. Horgan, Caesar’s out of pocket cost was only $300. Today, Cesar is no longer in pain and is able to attend school without missing any days due to oral health problems.

Aldo Parra

Five-year-old Aldo Parra’s mom found out about Healthy Smile Healthy Child (HSHC) at a community event at O’Brien Middle School where HSHC partnered with the Food Bank to perform outreach. This was one of many community events the non-profit participated in during 2018. Volunteer Dentist Dr. Melissa McCool provided Aldo with an exam and x-rays and will be providing restorative care, including fillings, for him in the near future. Aldo did fantastic with his dental treatment! Dr. McCool was impressed with how well he behaved, especially since this was the first time he had been seen by a dentist. In addition to being thankful for Aldo’s treatment, Aldo’s mother is happy and grateful that HSHC was able to also place her two daughters in a dental home to receive needed care.

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