What We Do
Your Special Smiles PLLC is a dental practice dedicated to improving the quality of life for adults who have special needs and geriatric patients who have limited mobility through improved oral health. We do this through three pillars: Advocacy, Access to Care, and Education. Peruse our website to find educational videos and resources, and to learn more specific information on our programs and providers.
Our hospital program was the very first program we started. Founded in 2015 by Dr. Brooke, our goal was that patients in South Central Idaho would not have to wait months and travel to Boise or Salt Lake City for dentistry under general anesthesia. Dr. Dave Seegmiller and Dr. Dave McClusky, Ms. Amber Veenstra, and Ms. Dawn Soto were instrumental for these
Through a partnership with the St. Luke’s Magic Valley Health Foundation, we have been able to raise over $35,000 to provide St. Luke's Jerome and St. Luke's Magic Valley with instruments needed to regularly treat adults dental needs under general anesthesia.
Some of our first major donors were: The Twin Falls Health Initiative Trust, Idaho Power, Walmart, Idaho Dental Foundation, Glanbia, Worst, Fitzgerald and Stover, Small Horse, the College of Southern Idaho, and Rotary Clubs. There were also other generous private donors.
The Your Special Smiles PLLC hospital program has evolved to offer more medical/dental integrated services through partnering with various physicians and specialists.
Drs. Dave McClusky, Josh Kern, Nicole Ruske, and Catherine Doyle were all very helpful in integrating medical services into our cases. We are happy to work with our patients' medical providers and other specialists whenever possible.
Some examples of concurrent operating room services are: baclofen pump placement, ear cleanings, eye exams, skin biopsies, hemorrhoid banding, pap smear, toenail removal, IUD placement, and blood draws.
We believe that ongoing preventative treatment is key for long term success. We are happy to work as a team with other dentists to make that happen. We do not treat patients who do not have a place to receive regular preventative care. If you can't find a place for preventative care, don't worry, we can help you. If you are a dentist who wants to be on our list of offices for preventative care referrals, please contact us so we can add you.
To find more details, and a list of dentists who frequently see our patients, see our Hospital Dentistry Page .
Your Special Smiles PLLC started a portable clinic in 2018 to serve patients living in long-term care and group homes.
This expansion was done with the help of: Dr. Richard Bailey, the CSI Small Business Development Center, the Idaho Dental Foundation, a loan from First Federal Bank, and generous private donors.
This clinic was set out to break down two significant barriers to care for this population.
By bringing services to the patients, we decreased the stress of transport as well as changed the setting to less intimidating. We saw increased cooperation in some of our patients and considered this a success.
At this point Dr. Brooke, Mariana Placencia RDA, and Vanda Johnson retired RDH turned RDA were our portable team. We offered exams, cleanings, fillings, SDF, and fluoride varnish.
In 2019 Your Special Smiles PLLC was awarded a HRSA Sub-Grant from the Department of Health and Welfare Division of Public Health. This enabled us to purchase equipment and hire two expanded access dental hygienists to provide portable hygiene services and gather teledental information. Holly Jones RDH- EA and Jingjing Qian RDH-EA joined our team. They chose our equipment and built our hygiene program.
Currently we are at capacity with this program. We are working with a limited number of residents in both Creekside Care Center and Desano Place (both assisted living/memory care facilities) in Jerome, ID. We take emergency call for Communicare (ICF-IDD) in Jerome. If you are a dentist who is interested in learning how to offer this in your community, please see our free resources to help get you started.
Services include: professional cleanings, application of fluoride varnish, application of SDF, and taking radiographs, photos and videos for teledental exams. Dr. Brooke reviews the information the team gathered and decides if she needs to go out to the home, refer the patient to a practice, or monitor situations.
As most of our patients have complex medical/behavioral histories, prior to treatment, Dr. Brooke reviews histories and writes up modifications for the team.
NOTE: This program was supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $661,650.77 with 71% funded by HRSA/HHS and $189,043.08 (29%) funded by non-government source(s). The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA/HHS, or the U.S. Government. Only part of this grant was given to our programs.
Assisted Oral Hygiene/Guided Oral Hygiene
After spending considerable time in various facilities, we realized that one of the biggest problems with oral health was the struggle for adequate daily oral hygiene. We met a wide variety of caregivers, who all seemed to have one thing in common, they were BUSY.
These caregivers work very hard to meet the needs of the residents, yet when we see the resident in the dentist office we often are guilty of unfairly blaming them for the resident's poor oral condition. We decided that as the dental team, we wanted to play a more active role in daily oral hygiene.
In 2019 we hired our first Oral Hygiene Assistant, Ms. Savanna Hendren who was a hygiene student at CSI. We trained her with PowerPoint and video, then Dr. Brooke went out with her to see all the residents who were participating in this pilot program. After she completed 10 hours of direct supervision, she was given a written exam. After that, once she and Dr. Brooke were comfortable with it, she was then able to go out and help the pilot program participants on her own.
Savanna was brushing, flossing, using proxy brushes, and applying Rx toothpaste to the teeth. She had no professional tools or equipment, she simply helped the patients use their own home hygiene products. She used a documentation system that Dr. Brooke developed in 2015 called the Your Special Smiles Oral Hygiene Ability Spectrum, which acknowledges that all residents may need different levels of help and encourages independence when possible.
Savanna was a leader in developing this program. She formed relationships with the residents, helped edit our documentation, and she made a huge difference in the residents oral health.
When the pandemic hit, our facilities went on lockdown. We were not able to continue providing this service, but the results that we had seen were so great, we did not want to abandon it. We needed someone on the inside and we decided to work with off-the-clock caregivers. Our first three caregivers were Sandra, Javier, and Carolina from Creekside Care Center. Since we were not able to train onsite due to lockdown, we utilized teledentistry.
Jingjing Qian RDH, EA took the lead on this. She helped us design our Guided Oral Hygiene program and she trained the caregivers using teledental technology. Jingjing would watch while the caregiver would clean the resident's teeth, then they would use the intraoral camera to see if any spots were missed. Jingjing then made suggestions on how to best to get the areas missed.
As the pandemic progressed Ms. Carolina Lopez CNA took a leadership role in this program and worked with Jingjing three hours per week to provide these services to the residents participating in the pilot. Jingjing won a national award for her work in this program. Once successful, we spread the program to DeSano Place.
Ms. Alicia McMurtry, a student in the CSI hygiene program was trained by Dr. Brooke and Jingjing both in Assisted Oral Hygiene and Guided Oral Hygiene. She learned quickly and partnered with Ms. Maria Santana CNA, who is an excellent caregiver at Desano Place. Now these services are being delivered regularly to a limited number of residents at both facilities.
After Alicia graduated, Ms. Ivy Burgess took over and helped us with a hybrid approach utilizing both in-person and teledentistry. Ms. McKenna Fickland is our newest student addition to the team. She has shown great leadership in keeping our service going at Desano Place when Ms. Santana made a career move.
NOTE: This program was supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $661,650.77 with 71% funded by HRSA/HHS and $189,043.08 (29%) funded by non-government source(s). The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA/HHS, or the U.S. Government. Only part of this grant was given to our programs. A similar program is also being developed at Idaho State University under the same grant funding with their hygiene program under the direction of Ms. Rachelle Williams. She has done a study, submitted an article, and we are anxiously waiting on the publication of that article.
Your Special Smiles PLLC is dedicated to spreading our information. The following are our educational pages:
- Book Dr. Brooke is our page that focuses on courses Dr. Brooke gives for both in person and virtual conferences. Dr. Brooke Travels all over the country and loves doing it. Her courses are high energy, interactive and clinically applicable. As a practicing dentist, she wants the learners to go home with new information they can use in their practice right away. She talks fast and loves to get as much as she can out of whatever time she is allotted. The Wonderful World of Special Care is her favorite course to deliver because she "gets to mess with people". We hope you are able to check out one of her courses. We think you will have fun. See our Book Dr. Brooke page to find out courses she offers, download her course handouts, and see how you can book her at your next event. We also have an upcoming events list where you can see her next few events.
- Short Clips and Tips: We make short videos for people looking to pick up little tidbits. Each of our hygiene students produces a video of something they learned with us, or something they taught us. Some videos come from team members or former team members. Our process overview videos and team trainings also live on this page.
- Full Length CE Courses: We are working on our own collection of full length CE courses. It is a slow process but we have a few for you to enjoy. There may be a nominal fee for some of our full length courses.
- Other Good Resources: This page is a list of resources that may be of value to our patients and to other provider. Listing resources in this area does not mean we endorse that product or service.
We are passionate advocates for our patients. Visit our Advocacy Page to learn issues we are working on currently. If you have an issue you think we should be aware of, please contact us. We only take formal stances on issues in our area of expertise (oral health) or issues that indirectly have an effect on oral health. We are not a political group nor do we support a single political party. We have regular contact with our local legislators to help in areas where we have expertise. We also advocate for our patients for policies in organized dentistry. We encourage membership and participation in organized dentistry. Dr. Brooke is a member of: ADA, ISDA, SCIDS, IOHA, AGD, AADMD, SCDA, AAC, NNOHA, and AMTA.
Our Awesome Team
Every member of our team is a great person. We select only people who are passionate and care deeply about our patients. Each of our team members is featured on our "Meet Our Team" page. Some have written their own bios and if CV's are available we will post them as well. We hire a student from the College of Southern Idaho dental hygiene program for a one year position their senior year. To see our past students, see the "Hygiene Student Hall of Fame". We celebrate those who have retired from working with us in our "Retired Jerseys" page.
- St. Luke's Magic Valley Medical Center
Contracted Facilities in Jerome:
- Desano Place
- Creekside Care
Hours: There is nothing regular about us. We have no regular hours.
Dr. Brooke's Other Job: Dr. Brooke also provides dental services at Family Health Services Idaho. She is the dentist at their Advanced Delivery Dental Clinic. This is a unique clinic that focuses on treating adults who have special healthcare needs. This clinic is in a building and they do provide comprehensive care. They take calls Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday 8:30am- 6:30pm. Their number is (208) 737-6778 . This is a completely unrelated clinic that happens to have the same doctor treating the same population. Here is their website.
Contact Us: To contact us you can send an email to Dr. Brooke at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note this is not a secure email. If you are sending patient information please see our Hospital Dentistry Page for instructions on referring a patient. Please do not email us about website services. We LOVE DentalScapes .