Polyester Bristle Toothbrushes

Dear Dr. Ellie:

Do you have any opinion on toothbrushes with polyester bristles? Are there any problems with them such as perhaps being more abrasive than nylon bristle brushes or not cleaning as well?

I purchased some polyester bristle toothbrushes from Amazon (search term abcoral — the ones with the black bristles).

Am liking them a lot but also wondering if they might be more abrasive then the usual nylon bristle brushes. The type I’m using has a small, smooth head with thin black bristles that seem stiffer than nylon but are very tapered so that the tips feel soft against my gums. While brushing with them, it feels to me like the bristles are getting in deeper between my teeth than the nylon bristles of my previous favorite brushes did.

The advertising for these brushes claims that they repel bacteria (not trusting that to be effective, though).

I rinse with Closys prior to brushing and use just a tiny dab of Crest.

G

Hi G,

Thanks so much for your message.

I think HOW we use a toothbrush is critical – ensuring that we massage every part of our gums – if we are going to rely on brushing to clean our mouths.
Finding a better brush is probably important if you are relying on brushing (+/- flossing) alone to clean your teeth.

The use of my mouth rinses offers a second line of cleaning power to those who have trouble brushing.
Xylitol makes plaque slippery and so the effect of the rinses is more powerful.
Cleaning your brush often is to ensure that we do not introduce more problems than we solve with the brushing stage of this oral care routine.

With this multi-level attack (xylitol and the rinses that I recommend) I think the choice of brush is a little less important. It is good that a brush feels right to YOU. When we tested a whole bunch of brushes ( when we were getting ready to make the Zellies brush) it was interesting that only 2 out of about 30 brushes were selected as “great brushes”!

One was the Mentadent and the other was a brand of GUM brush by Butler.

I have no experience with the brush you mention – but I will post this on the blog and let’s see if others want join in this conversation!
Thanks again for your message.

I hope to make a little video of how to brush teeth soon – how to ensure you get to every part of your mouth!

Ellie



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