The right interdental brush – which size do I use?

5th January 2018 | Posted by: Heather Cresswell

Updated November 2019

There’s so much choice! Which is the right interdental brush for me?

right interdental brush - picture for oral hygiene

There’s no set answer to that question, as everyone needs different brushes. Our teeth are as individual as we are! Moreover, we all need a few brushes, as one size doesn’t fit all!

It’s those gaps between the teeth, where teeth and gums meet, that can trap particles. Once that happens, then bacteria form a sticky biofilm and inflammation begins. So interdental spaces are important places to keep clean. Yet it can be hard to choose the right interdental brush, let alone use them regularly and properly.

Manufacturers of interdental brushes have colour-coded them, so that we can easily choose, purchase and use the sizes that we need. The smallest sized ones are pink, and have a diameter of 0.4mm and the widest brush is black and measures 1.5mm.

Whether you have a wide space caused by a missing tooth, or slight gaps between teeth, there’s an interdental brush that will help keep the edges of your teeth plaque-free.

Your dental hygienist can recommend the right interdental brushes so that all the planes of the teeth are reached. Alternatively, you can experiment with a mixed pack at home which will range from pink to black through a rainbow of colours. But there’s nothing like reliable professional advice.

Interdental brushes are handy, and a really useful tool to help clean the spaces between our teeth that a regular toothbrush can’t reach.

Tips on using interdental brushes:

“Visited the dental hygienist – I was welcomed into the foyer by the lovely receptionist, straight into the surgery to see the hygienist who welcomed me, made me comfortable and always during the procedure ensured that I was ok. All done with expertise and calmness. Teeth cleaned and polished and after some words about care I left the surgery. All done and dusted quickly and efficiently including paying the bill and purchasing some TePe brushes which I find so good at keeping my mouth in good shape.” BM – a SpaDental Chard patient

Our practice sells a range of interdental brushes and other oral health products

Shows right interdental brush size as colour coded and in bamboo
If you’re not sure what would suit your requirements, then please ask us for advice. As we’re aware of how one-use plastics impacts on our environment, we now stock brushes with bamboo handles.

Dental Therapist Thomas Wardiell at SpaDental Plymouth, has recorded this short video (apologies for the flickering) for you to see how to use these clever little brushes. It will really help you to keep the gap between your teeth and gums clean, and is so important for the health of your gums. It can be hard to know which size or type is the right interdental brush, so our team can help you choose.

Remember, it’s possible to arrange a direct access visit to your dental hygienist

Direct access means you don’t have to make an appointment with the dentist before you can see the hygienist. If your gums are bleeding a bit, or feel a little uncomfortable, your hygienist can help you to sort it out. A visit to the hygienist is also great if you have an important date coming up, and want a polished look for the occasion!

Did you know?







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8th November, 2020

Yes, we are still open!

As lockdown continues, our dental services continue without interruption. We're here to help you receive the face-to-face care you need from your dental team.

Access our free remote advice and triage service:

Thank you

Patients often ask: