Frequently Asked Questions

About Bristle

What is Bristle?

The Bristle oral health test offers a comprehensive assessment of your overall oral health, including your risk factors for cavities, gum disease, and bad breath. By analyzing the identity and relative abundance of bacteria in your saliva, Bristle detects the root cause of oral disease and connections to other chronic illnesses. We also provide scientifically-backed product, diet, and lifestyle recommendations based on your unique oral microbiome.

Who is Bristle for?

Bristle is for anyone who is interested in understanding and improving both their oral and overall health. You must be 18 years or older to purchase a Bristle test.

What does Bristle's test look for?

Bristle profiles your oral microbiome - the makeup of bacteria, fungi, and viruses in your mouth. Some of these bacteria are beneficial to our health, while others are harmful and can increase our risk or cause disease.

How long does it take to get my results once I return my sample?

Results will be returned to you in 2 - 3 weeks from when you mail your sample back to our lab.

Can I use my FSA or HSA for payment?

Bristle tests are eligible for reimbursement by most FSA and HSA plans. Since every plan is different, we advise that you check with your plan to confirm that the Bristle test is eligible. Contact us at support@bristlehealth.com to obtain an itemized receipt.

Orders and payment

Where is Bristle available?

Bristle tests are available in all US states except NY. We plan to offer our test in NY state and internationally in the future, so please sign up for our newsletter here to stay updated and be the first to know when its available in your location!

When will I receive my test?

Orders ship within 1-2 days from purchase, and shipping usually takes 3 - 5 business days for delivery. We will provide you with updates on your order via email and you can track the shipment in your dashboard by clicking on the "My Orders" tab.

Can I use my HSA/FSA for payment?

Bristle tests are eligible for reimbursement by most FSA and HSA plans. Since every plan is different, we advise that you check with your plan to confirm that the Bristle test is eligible. Contact us at support@bristlehealth.com to obtain an itemized receipt.

Is Bristle covered by dental or medical insurance?

Bristle is not currently covered by insurance.

Does Bristle offers refunds?

We offer a full refund for test kits if an order is canceled within twenty four (24) hours of purchase. If a refund is requested after 24 hours but within 14 days of purchase of an Oral Health Test, and if the sample is not returned to Bristle, we offer a refund in the amount of the test kit purchase price minus a $25 (USD) processing fee. The shipping and handling costs plus tax (if any and where applicable) are non-refundable. No refunds are available after 14 days of purchase. To request a refund, please send an email to the Bristle Care team at support@bristle.com with your order number. For our full refund policy, please view our terms of service.

Collecting your sample

How do I collect my sample?

Bristle profiles your oral microbiome by using a sample of your saliva. To provide your sample, you spit into a small tube containing a clear liquid solution that functions to stabilize your saliva. You mail back the tube to Bristle's laboratory using the prepaid envelope provided and results are returned online. Detailed step-by-step instructions of the sample collection process are included in each test kit and also available through your account dashboard after registering your kit.

When is the best time to collect my sample?

In general, wait at least 30 minutes after eating, drinking, or smoking before providing your saliva sample. The best time to collect your sample is first thing in the morning, before you've done anything else.

Does the kit expire?

Our collection kit stabilizes your saliva sample so that it can be properly tested after a period of time. We recommend that you collect and return your sample within 1 month of receiving the kit. After one month, we may cannot guarantee the quality of your sample and accuracy of your results.

What is the clear liquid in the collection kit?

This is called a "buffer" solution and helps preserve your sample after you send it back to us for analysis. We provide you with two collection tubes in each kit in case you spill the first one. Our buffer is non-toxic but we do not recommend consuming it.

Your results

How long does it take to get my results?

Results will typically be returned to you in 2 - 3 weeks from when we receive your kit to our lab.

What do my results tell me?

At the highest level, your results will give you insight into your oral health status - based on your oral microbiome, clinical, and behavioral risk factors for disease. We boiled down this complex data into easy-to-understand scores related to cavities, gum disease, and bad breath. Digging into your report allows you to investigate the kinds of bacteria in your oral microbiome and what they do. We continually release new features and insights, so keep an eye out for updates and re-visit your report to see what news answers you can uncover!

Can I share the results with my dentist or doctor?

Yes! We encourage you to discuss your results with your medical provider.

How do you determine my results?

Our collection kit stabilizes your saliva sample so that it can be properly tested after a period of time. We recommend that you collect and return your sample within 1 month of receiving the kit. After one month, we may cannot guarantee the quality of your sample and accuracy of your results.

Your privacy

How do you protect my personal information and data?

We fiercely protect your privacy every step of the way — we will never share your personal data without your consent. Even with consent, we will only ever share your data to advance oral health research or at your request. Bristle implements several physical and technical security measures to ensure confidentiality, integrity, security, and availability of Bristle and user data by employing industry standard safeguards such as de-identification, pseudonymization, encryption, and data segmentation. You control how your data is used, stored, and shared. For more information, see our full privacy policy here.

Do you sell my data?

We will never sell your data. Our mission is to empower our users to better understand their oral health to lead healthier and happier lives.  We give you choices to control how your personal information is used, stored, or shared. You can request your data and sample be removed from your account by contacting support@bristlehealth.com.
Want to learn more? Check out our terms of service here.

Is Bristle CLIA compliant?

Yes — Bristle tests are analyzed in a U.S. laboratory that is certified by CLIA standards. A CLIA certified lab must meet strict quality standards and ensure both the accuracy and validity of your results.

About Bristle

What is Bristle?
Who is Bristle for?
What does Bristle's test look for?

My orders and payment

Where is Bristle available?
Is there a minimum age I have to be to use Bristle?
When will I receive my test?
Can I use my HSA/FSA for payment?
Is Bristle covered by dental or medical insurance?
Does Bristle offers refunds?

My collection kit and sample

How does sample collection work?
When is the best time to collect my saliva sample?
Is there a timeframe for when I have to return my sample?
What is the clear liquid in the sample collection tube?

My results

How long does it take to get my results once I return my sample?
What do my results tell me?
Can I share my results with my dentist or doctor?
How do you determine my results?

My privacy

How do you protect my personal information and data?
Do you sell my data?
Is Bristle HIPAA compliant?
Is Bristle CLIA compliant?