If you have started sizing patients with the TePe interdental brushes and invested in the concept that dental offices need to provide more than 2 sizes of interdental brushes to properly size each person’s embrasure spaces, you may have noticed some patients could have many brushes to fit their spaces.
On average, patients need 2 sizes of interdental brushes. This is to help increase their motivation to use the brushes and keeps the cost down when caring for their teeth at home. There are many offices throughout the US that have compliant patients who will use 3 or 4 interdental brushes. How lucky are they!!? Most patients, however, will only stick with one or two interdental brushes to clean the many spaces in their mouth.
A tip to ensure patients are being effective in biofilm removal and we are creating more patient compliance is: Compromise.
Compromise? Yes, clinicians will have to compromise on their size choices. For instance, if you have a patient who could use a blue, green and a purple brush. Give the patient the green and blue brush and show them how to use it in the larger spaces. The patient can insert the brush back and forth and lean it against the tooth or tissue to create a similar cleaning action. Though it would be ideal to have the third size, is a patient going to use it? If so, make the recommendation. If not, compromise down to two sizes.
One caveat: The patient will need to ensure that the brush bristles are not worn. The wires are all plastic coated, but you want the bristles to create a barrier between the tooth or gum and the wire, especially if you are advising them to lean the brush to better engage the tooth.