Oral hygiene interventions are commonly discussed in current studies to clarify the most effective techniques for specific population groups. The article by Petker et al. (2019) reports the results of the comparison of the effectiveness of powered and manual toothbrushes among daily users. In this discussion, data collection methods, purposes, and study design will be analyzed to understand what changes could be made to replicate the research.
The authors used a semi-structured interview and a psychological questionnaire to gather personal information about the participants and choose those who meet the inclusion criteria (18-30 years of age and more than 20 own teeth). However, this data was not relevant to the purpose of the study. Petker et al. (2019) aimed to analyze if oral cleanliness may be better achieved in people who use powered toothbrushing as a daily routine than manual toothbrushing initiatives. The researchers used video observations and clinical evaluation as the main methods to collect data and answer the research questions.
Video observations were necessary to tape oral hygiene performance, its duration, and sites of cleaning. Two independent examiners assessed plaque, gingival bleeding, recessions, and periodontal pocket depths as dental status elements before and after brushing (Petker et al., 2019). This quasi-experimental study design allowed manipulating independent variables and estimating the causal effect without random assignment.
Oral cleanliness was the major outcome, comprising plaque and other clinical parameters and making clinical assessment an appropriate research method. The authors concluded that there were no evident benefits of electric toothbrushes compared to manual toothbrushes for oral hygiene (Petker et al., 2019). Although this study design reflected clinical reality and toothbrushes’ capabilities, the limitations related to video sight and equipment cannot be ignored. To replicate the results, the changes in the sample generalizability and methodology (observations with surveys) have to be considered.
Petker, W., Weik, U., Margraf-Stiksrud, J., & Deinzer, R. (2019). Oral cleanliness in daily users of powered vs. manual toothbrushes – A cross-sectional study. BMC Oral Health, 19(1). Web.