US 2417682 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Mam 18:, 1947. HAMlLTON 2,417,682,
DENTAL APPLIANCE Filed June 8, 1944 Patented Mar. 18, 1947 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE DENTAL APPLIANCE Leon H. Hamilton, Waterbury, Conn.
Application June'8, 1944, Serial No. 539,278
2 Claims. 1
This invention relates to dental appliances, and more particularly those which serve as a holder or carrier for dental cleaning tape or thread used'for cleaning the spaces between the teeth.
One object of the invention is to provide a satisfactory appliance by means of which a person can use dental tape for cleaning his or her teeth.
A narrow and thin tape is a more satisfactory means for clearing the interdental spaces and polishing the tooth surfaces than is the wellknown dental thread or floss, and one of the purposes of the invention is to provide an appliance by which the tape can be mounted or held in a manner such that greatly improved results are obtained from the standpoints of cleansing action, convenience of use, andavoidance of injury to the gums.
To these and other ends the invention consists in the novel features to be hereinafter described and finally pointed out in the claims.
In the accompanying drawing:
Fig. 1 is a side elevation of a dental appliance embodying the invention;
Figs. 2 and 3 are sections on lines 2-2 and 3-4, respectively, of Fig. 1;
Fig. 4 is an elevation of a holder of somewhat modified form;
Fig. 5 is a section on line 5-5 of Fig. 4; and
Fig. 6 is a detail sectional view showing a fur ther modification.
In carrying out the invention, a narrow dental tape i preferred as an element to be introduced into the spaces between the teeth for cleansing those spaces and polishing the tooth surfaces, but where desired the holder of the invention may be employed for holding thread or floss. The invention contemplates the provision of a holder of such nature that the same may be conveniently manipulated by a person in cleansing his or her teeth by the introduction of the tape between the teeth, the holder having suitable means by which it can be held between the fingers when moved in and out relatively to the mouth, and the holder also having provisions whereby the same is supported and guided by one or more of the teeth while this movement takes place. It is also contemplated that the dental tape or other cleaning element be mounted upon the holder in such a manner that during the movement or operation abovedescribed the tape will be drawn down gradually into the interdental space as the holder is moved in one direction, and gradually moved upward in said space as the holder is traversed in the opposite direction, in order that the maximum cleansing effect may be obtained. It
is further contemplated that effective means be provided at opposite end portions of the holder for holding the tape and maintaining its position, and further, that the holder be of a chareither inwardly or outwardly with respect to the mouth.
A satisfactory form of device meeting the above-mentioned conditions is shown in Figs. 1 to 3, inclusive, and in these views the holder is generally indicated at l0, and a portion of tape held and carried thereby at I l. The tape I I may be of a kind customarily used by dentists, having a width of about inch and a thickness of a few thousandths of an inch, although the invention is not limited to any particular dimensions. The holder 10 may be made of a lightweight plastic material molded to shape, and it is so constructed that a portion of tape can be strung across it in the manner indicated in Fig. 2, and secured thereto at the respective tape ends in a detachable manner in order that, when the holder is in use, the tape carriedthereby may be under some tension, and in order that after use the tape can be readily removed from'the holder and another piece of tape substituted.
The holder should preferably be of such form that in using the appliance the same may be supported and guided upon a tooth or teeth for in-and-out'movement in a horizontal direction, generally speaking, the tape, on the other hand, being so mounted on the holder that it Eat a slight angle to the general direction of in-and-out movement, so that as the holder is traversed in onedirection the tape moves from the upper part of the tooth space into the lower part thereof, and moves upwardly in the tooth space when the holder is traversed in the opposite direction. For
these purposes the holder I0 is preferably characterized by an elongated bar-like body l2 having atone end l3 provisions for securing one end ofthe tape portion in place at or near the extremity of the bar 12, whereas at the opposite extremity of bar [2 the same is connected to (as by being made integral with) an extension 14 having provisions for holding the other extremityof the tape portion. The extension l4 may, as shown, be generally in the form of a disk made integral with and laterally offset from the" bar l2, the arrangementbeing' such that fastening means such as'l5 provided upon extension III will hold the tape at a slight angle to the bar 12. In the form shown the fastening means l5 comprises disks l5 of metal or plastic mate may be effected in the manner shown by intro ducin} the tape between one or the disks and the adjacent face of the extension in a location below the rivet [6. Thus in the form shown the tape will be attached to the extension at a point below the center of the extension, and upward movement of the tape extremity beyond this position will be prevented in an obvious manner.
At the other end of the bar [2 the tape-securing means l3 there provided may include a. kerf I! provided in the bar at the under part thereof, the kerf having a bottom l8, as shown by the dotted line in Fig. 1, conforming to the desired slanting location of the tape. The fastening means 13 further comprises curved portions or extensions [9 formed on the bar at opposite sides of the kerf l1, said extensions being provided with concave surfaces 20 adapted to be engaged by a knot 21 provided in the end portion of the tape.
In placing the tape in position in the holder, the tape portion is knotted at one end, as indicated at 2|, and the portion adjacent the knot is introduced into the kerf IT, as shown in Fig. 1. The tape is stretched across the holder in the manner shown in Fig. 1, and its other end portion introduced between the extension l4 and one of the disks i5, for example, the disk facing the observer in Fig. 1. In using the appliance, the extension M can be grasped between the index finger and thumb and traversed in the manner indicated above. In Fig. 1 there is shown for illustrative purposes a tooth 22 projecting upwardly from a gum 23, the tape holder being in a position such that a portion of the tape will lie in the lower portion of the space between the tooth 22 and the next adjacent tooth. It will be manifest that if the holder is moved to the right with reference to Fig. 1, the tape will be moved gradually upward in the tooth space at the same time that it is moving laterally across that space, and that upon a movement of the holder in the opposite direction the tape will be moved downwardly again in the tooth space. By this arrangement the tape has an exceptionally effective action in clearing the spaces between the teeth, and in polishing the tooth surfaces as the tape is drawn across the tooth surfaces while located at an angle thereto. The lower edge of bar I2, resting upon the tooth, serves to locate the holder relatively to the teeth and guide it. It will also be observed that the structure provides stops for arresting the traverse of the holder in opposite directions, inasmuch as the extensions 19 are adapted to be contacted by a tooth or teeth when the holder is traversed in one direction, and in a similar manner a curved portion 24 on extension M will be contacted when the holder is traversed in the opposite direction.
In the modified form of the invention shown in Fig. 4, the holder is provided with an extension M having a slot M at right angles to the bar l2. The attaching device associated with extension I l comprises a disk 25 having a shank 26 movable in slot I4", and a clamping nut 21. The nut 21 is adapted to act on the clamping disk 28 and the latter will hold the tape ll against one side face of extension M As the fastening device is adjustable in the slot M in a direction substantially at right angles to the axis of bar IF, it is apparent that the acute angle at which the tape is held is susceptible of some adjustment, this being desirable in some instances. The tape can be held by disk 25 if desired.
In the modified form shown in Fig. 6, there is a fastening or securing device 29 generally similar to that which has just been described, this device being adjustable in a slot 30. In this case, however, the extension l4 of the bar is provided in an intermediate plane with a kerf 3|, and the tape ll can be introduced into this kerf from below, being limited in its upward movement by the adjustment given to the shank 29 of the securing device 29.
It will be understood from the foregoing description that the improved device is characterized by a simple and. inexpensive holder in which dental tape can be held for use in a convenient manner in cleansing the spaces between the teeth. It will be seen that the invention provides, among other things, a holder in the form of an elongated bar having at one end, in or near the axis of the bar, provisions for securing one extremity of the tape, and having at the opposite end of the bar an extension offset from the bar axis, having in an offset location relatively to the bar a means for securing the other tape extremity such that the tape is stretched across the holder at an acute angle to the bar, so that as the holder is traversed the tape moves up and down in the tooth spaces as well as laterally thereof, thus providing a much more effective cleansing action than has been possible heretofore.
While three different forms of the invention are illustrated, it is to be understood that the invention can be embodied in many other forms, and that various changes can be made in the structure within the principles of the invention and the scope of the claims.
What I claim is:
1. A holder for dental tape comprising a bar provided adjacent the respective ends with means for securing the extremities of a piece of dental tape so that the tape extends in a straight line, the bar having a supporting and guiding portion between its ends which is substantially rectilinear and at an acute angle to the lie of the tape, the securing means adjacent one end of the bar being constituted by an offset disk-like extension and a clamping portion cooperating with said extension, said clamping portion being adjustable transversely of the guiding portion of the holder.
2. A holder such as described, comprising an elongated substantially straight bar having at one end a transverse extension of substantially less length than the bar, means located adjacent a face of said extension for securing a tape extremity in place with the tape extending at a slight angle to the bar in the direction of the other end of the bar, such other end of the bar being provided in a location substantially in alignment with the bar axis with means for detachably securing in position the other extremity of the tape, said last-named means comprising a portion of the bar having a kerf in the general plane of the bar and disposed at an acute angle to the bar axis.
LEON H. HAMILTON.
REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:
UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 2,180,522 Henne Nov. 21, 1939 1,262,464 Dierke Apr. 9, 1918 1,287,926 Ecaubert Dec. 17, 1918 2,197,345 Emery Apr. 16, 1940