US 2257709 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Sept. 30, 1941. A L. P. ANDERSON 7 2,257,709
DENTAL APPLIANCE Filed Oct. 14, 1938 Patented Sept. 30, 1941 .UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE DENTAL APPLIANCE Louis P. Anderson, Villa Park, 111.
Application October 14, 1938, Serial No. 234,971
This invention relates to shields or covers adapted to be placed in the mouth over the teeth therein for encasing the teeth and adjacent gums.
More specifically, the invention relates to a trough-like shield conforming with the contour of a human jaw and having flexible flaps along the sides thereof adapted to be pressed against and adhere to the gums on each side of the teeth, whereby all of the teeth projecting from a jaw will be covered.
In the treating or cleaning of teeth and gums, it is desirable to retain the treating material or cleaner around the teeth or gums in an undiluted state. For example, in the treatment of pyorrhea and other gum disorders, a treatment is placed between and around the teeth. The saliva in the mouth, however, soon dilutes this treating material and the treating material soon drains from around the teeth and gum. Under these conditions, the beneficial efiects of the treating material are soon dissipated and more frequent applications of fresh material are required than would be necessary if the material could have a prolonged contact in an undiluted state with the treated area.
Itis also desirable in many dental operations to retain the gums in a dry condition. This has heretofore been quite dificult due to the collection of saliva in the mouth. The present invention now greatly facilitates the maintenance of gums in dry condition for a dental operation.
Dentists have long recognized thatthe cleansing of teeth should be accompanied by a massaging action on the gums and have taken great pains to educate the public as to the proper manner in brushing their teeth. In spite of this effort,
however, correct teeth cleaning technique is not yet acquired by the majority of the public. One of the forms of this invention, on the other hand, provides for the correct cleaning of teeth through an ordinary biting or masticating manipulation of the jaws, so that the cleansing'operation is to be pressed against and retained bythe gums to hold the shield in position over the teeth.
In a modification, the body portion of the shield can have a plurality of inwardly projecting flexible projections or tits adapted to engage the teeth and marginal ends of the gums as well as project between the teeth. If desired, some of the tits can be longer than others to reach between the interproximal spaces. When the base of the shield is pressed toward the teeth which the shield covers as by a chewing or biting operation of the jaws, the projections or tits are forced against and between the teeth and under the free margins of the gums thereby cleaning the teeth and massaging the gums.
The shields or cover members of this invention can be furnished in different sizes, but it is believed that three sizes, such as large, medium and small, will be sufficient to meet all requirements.
It is, then, an object of this invention to provide a'shield adapted to encase the teeth projecting from a jaw and be retained by the gums on the opposite sides of the teeth.
A further object of this invention is to provide an inexpensive dental shield adapted to encase the teeth projecting from a human jaw and be retained by the jaw.
A further object of this invention is to provide a trough-like member following the coutour of a. human jaw and having flaps adapted to be retained by the sides of the gums.
A further object of this invention is to provide a tooth or gum shield capable of being placed in position by the patient.
A further object of the invention is to provide shield devices readily mounted over the teeth and having inwardly projecting means for cleansing the teeth.
A further object of the invention is to provide disposable shields for the teeth or gurus in a human mouth.
Other and further objects of the invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art from the following detailed description of the annexed sheet of drawings which discloses preferred embodiments of the invention.
On the drawing:
Figure 1 is a perspective view of a dental shield according to this invention.
Figure 2 is a broken rear-elevational view of the shield shown in Figure l.
Figure 3 is an enlarged vertical cross-sectional view, with parts in elevation, taken through the upper andlower jaw of a human mouth and illus- USE. preferably made thicker than thefiaps l4 and trating the shields of this invention disposed over the teeth and adhering to the gums.
Figure 4 is a cross-sectional view, with parts in elevation, similar to Figure 3 but illustrating modified forms of shields according to this invention, which shields are provided with inward- 1y projecting tits for teeth-cleansing and gummassaging operations.
Figure 5 is a cross-sectional view, with parts in elevation, taken through the upper jawof a human mouth and illustrating a further modified form of shield according to this invention disposed over the teeth of the upper jaw and adhering to the gums at the sides of the teeth.
As shown on the drawing:
In Figures 1 to 3 inclusive the reference numeral I designates generally a shield or cover according to this invention. 1 The shield I0 cornprises a trough-likeor cup-shaped body portlon II of U-shaped contour so as to follow the tooth or jaw'contour of a. humanmouth. The ends of the body portion II areclosed as at I2 and I3 respectively (Figures 1 and 2).
the teeth It projecting from the gums i? of a human jaw. The flaps I4 extending from the front. side of the body member II are fitted against the gums I! along the outer sides of the teeth id. The flaps I5 are likewise fitted against the gums I 'I along the inner sides of the teeth !6.
The shields ID are made of moisture-proof or moisture-resisting material so that a pressing of the. flaps I4 and I5 against the gums [I7 will cause the flaps to adhere to the gums due to capillary action or adherence'obtained by pressing a flexiblesheet against a wet surface. If
desired the flaps Id and 'I5 can have a 'water- 5 soluble adhesive applied to their inner'faces, but such additional adhesive is not ordinarily necessary.
The .ends I2 and I3 of the shields fit over the last molar teeth .in the mouth and seal the ends of the trough so as to provide'closed chambers I8 around the teeth. These chambers I8 are sealed from the mouth bythe flaps I l and I5 and by the end portions I2 and I3.
The shields I9 can be made of any inexpensive material so asfto enable disposal after each The body portions II -ofthe shields ID are I5 so as to have increased strength andshaperetaining characteristics. Theshields can be made by stamping ormold ing operations and, if necessary, the body por- In other cases wherexthe gums IJ'I have been I treated by injecting :medicines therein. the
treating material can be retained in an undiluted condition by merely disposing shields according to this invention over the teeth and gums. If the material drains from the gums into the sealed chambers I8, it may still have some effect upon the gums due to mechanical splashing against the gums or action of its vapors on the gums. The shields therefore make possible prolonged treatment with a single application of treating material.
In Figure 4, parts identical with parts described in Figure 3 have been marked with the same reference numerals.
As shown in Figure 4, shields 20 are disposed over the teeth I6. These shields 20 are'made of a more permanent material such as rubber and are adapted for repeated use.
The shields 20 comprise thickened body portions 2I corresponding with the body portions II of shield-s Ill and thinner flaps/22 and 23 corresponding with the fiaps I4 and I5 of the shields m. The body portions 2| are disposed around the teeth It and the flaps 22 and 23 are pressed against and adhere to the gums H in the same manner as describedin connection with Figure 3. Sealed chambers I8 are thus provided around the teeth I6.
The body portions 2! of the shields 28 have a plurality of spaced inwardly projecting fingers .or tits 24 along the side walls thereof. The bases or connecting walls of the body portions 2I are not provided with the fingers or'tits 24 and the body portion 2! is preferably formed so that these connecting walls or base walls are in spaced relation from the tops of the teeth I6.
When the teeth I6 are moved toward, each' other, as during a biting or chewing movement of the jaws, the base walls orconnecting. walls of the body members 2I'are forced toward the tops of the teeth thereby causing the side walls of the body portion 2I to flex. This spreads the fingers or tits 24 and creates a massaging or rubbing action of the tits against the teeth and into the free ends or marginal ends Ila of the gums I1. 5
The fingers or tits 24 thus clean the teeth, and since they extend along the entire exposed tooth area, a simple biting or chewing action is all that is necessary to massage the gums and clean the teeth. These fingers or tits 241will also project into the spaces between the teeth to clean the same. y
A cleansing preparation can be insertedin the shields 2i]. before the same are mounted in' position on the gums, or the teeth and gums can be coated with a cleansing preparation prior to assembly of the'shields. Then when the shields are flexed by the biting or chewing movements of the jaws, this cleansing preparation will be flushed in and out aroundthe fingers to aid the same in their cleansing and massaging functions. A plunger action is thus obtainedin the chambers 58, which forces the cleansing or treating material into and out of allcavities, spaces-be tween the teeth, and even between; the marginal edges Ila of the gums I7. and the teeth. 7
The rubber or other permanent material used for making the s hields 29 makes possible 'a repeated use of the'shields;
In Figure 5', parts identical: with parts described in Figure 4 have been designated by the same reference numerals." In the modification shown in Figure 5, additional fingers or tits 25 t are. formed onthe. connecting wall or base of the body portion 2I of the 'shield 20. These fingers act against the tops of the teeth such as I6 and, during the biting or chewing manipulations of the jaws, will spread and rub over the tops of the teeth in the same manner in which the fingers 24 rub over the sides of the teeth as described in Figure 4.
It should be understood that two shields 20 are not necessarily used at the same time for simultaneous treatments of the upper and lower teeth. The same shield 20 can be used to treat both sets of teeth in succession and the biting operation of one set of teeth, against the shield 20 will have the same result as the contacting of the two shields together, such as is shown in Figure 4.
I am aware that many changes may be made and numerous details of construction may be varied through a, wide range without departing from the principles of this invention, and I, therefore, do not purpose limiting the patent granted hereon otherwise than necessitated, by the prior art.
I claim as my invention:
A dental appliance comprising a flexible channel-shaped body member having sidewalls and a connecting wall of substantially equal thickness arranged to encase all of the teeth projecting from a human jaw in spaced relation from said teeth, said sidewalls having substantially the same height along their entire length, walls at the ends of said body member extending from said connecting wall to the tops of said sidewalls, relatively thinner flexible flaps continuing upwardly from the sidewalls of said body member having inner faces engageable along substantially their entire length and Width with the gums adjacent said teeth for retaining said body memher in said spaced relation therewith, and a plurality of fingers projecting inwardly from the walls of said body member and adapted normally to engage a tooth surface at their ends, said fingers being arranged to rub against a portion of a surface adjacent the fingers to cleanse the surface when said body member is flexed.
LOUIS P. ANDERSON.