US 3188673 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
June 15, 1965 J. E. NEWMAN 3, 7
TOOTHBRUSH Filed March 4, 1964 INVENTOR- JuelEdmmd Hemmnn BY 238% 4 Chicane-J5 United States Patent "ice 3,188,673 TOUTHBRUSH Joel Edward Newman, Northampton, Mass, assignor to Pro-Phy-Lac-Tic Brush Company, Florence, Mass, a corporation of Ohio I Filed Mar. 4, 1964, Ser. No. 349,316
2 Claims. (Cl. -167) This invention relates to toothbrushes and more particularly to a toothbrush bristle block having a surface contour of maximum effectiveness for cleaning teeth, massaging the gums and dislodging food particles from between the teeth.
Numerous programs have been instituted in recent years, particularly in the schools, with the view to training children of school age in the correct use of the toothbrush. In general, the brush should be used in up or down strokes, by movement of the bristles from the gums to the teeth. Since proper brushing is an important factor in good dental health, it is the principal object of this invention to provide a toothbrush having a bristle block with a surface contour uniquely adapted for only the proper brushing technique.
It is another object of this invention to provide a toothbrush having its bristles configured to mesh with the dental contour so that when the brush is employed in the proper manner, it is highly effective for cleaning not only teeth and massaging the gums but is also effective in dislodging food particles from between the teeth. A brush embodying this invention is thus a real aid in keeping clean the problem areas between the teeth.
It is a further object of this invention to provide a brush of the type described which is further characterized by a generally uni-form overall flexibility whereby the same degree of pressure and cleaning action occurs both on the outer and inner surfaces of the teeth and in the interstitial zone between the teeth.
Another object of this invention is to provide a toothbrush having a brush configuration which in effect practically obliges the user to brush up and down in the dentally approved manner.
The above and other objects and advantages of this invention will be more readily apparent from a reading of the following description in connection with the accompanying drawing, in which FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a toothbrush embodying this invention;
FIG. 2 is a side elevational view of the brush, shown in FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a side elevational view showing the relationship of the bristle block to the dental contour; and
FIG. 4 is a cross sectional view, on an enlarged scale, showing the action of the bristle filaments as they are flexed when the brush is in use.
As shown in the drawing, the toothbrush embodying this invention comprises a handle 6, brush back 7 of integral construction and a bristle block, shown generally at 8, ex-
tending from the back 7. The bristles may be affixed to the back in conventional fashion and the bristle block consists of a plurality of individual bristle tufts arranged in rows disposed parallel and transversely of the axis of the handle 6. As shown in FIG. 1, the transverse rows consist of four bristle tufts with the exception of the outermost row which has three tufts.
As best shown in FIGS. 2 and 3, the bristle block 8 is provided with a surface contour which corresponds to the I profile of the average adult set of teeth. The contour consists of a plurality of ridges, extending across the brush,
provided by the relatively long bristle tufts 10. Between adjacent ridges, formed by the long tufts 10, are concave areas or valleys, indicated generally at 12 in FIGS. 2 and 3. These concave areas, as shown are of arcuate con- 3,188,673 Patented June 15, 1965 figuration with radii of curvature selected to insure good surface contact of the bristle ends with the surface of the teeth. The brush contour is thus of undulate configuration corresponding to the human dental contour which is also composed of a series of high points formed by the outer tooth surfaces and the interstitial zones between the teeth. It will thus be realized that the contour of the brush block embodying this invention is a negative contour of the human dental contour.
As shown in FIG. 3, the distance between adjacent rows of long bristles 10, designated a, corresponds to the width of the average adult molar and the distance between the two outer rows of long bristle tufts, designated b, corresponds to the width of the larger teeth such as the incisors and back molars, as shown at m in FIG. 3. The depth of the valleys, shown as c, is sufficient so that when the concave bristles are engaged with the outer surfaces of the teeth, the longer bristles 10 will extend sufficiently into the crevices between for effective cleaning action.
As shown in FIG. 3, the contour brush block enables the user to interdigitate the outer ends of long bristles 10 between the teeth and with an up and down brushing stroke to simultaneously clean the teeth and dislodge food particles between the teeth, all without changing the stroke or pressure exerted on the brush.
Another important feature of the contour brush is its improved massaging action on the gums. The reason for this is that the gums generally follow the contour of the teeth, so that by using the proper up and down brushing stroke, away from the gums, the user achieves more complete and intimate contact of the brush with the surface of the gums.
Because the beneficial results derived from the use of this brush configuration are predicated on the recommended brushing stroke, the shape and appearance of the brush is actually suggestive of up and down stroke. The brush thus serves as a constant reminder of proper brushing technique. Moreover, when the brush is used correctly it has a more comfortable and beneficial feeling than when incorrectly used in a horizontal back and forth motion. This brush configuration thus virtually requires the user to employ the up and down, dentally approved, motion. As a further visual reminder, the long bristles 10 may be made of bristle material which contrasts in color with tufts forming the concave portions of the contours. For example, the longer bristles 10 may be made of blue or green nylon, while the shorter bristles may be made of white nylon. In this way the brush surface appears as a plurality of spaced parallel bars disposed in the direction showing the direction of proper brushing movement.
While the bristle block may be made of any suitable filamentary or bristle material, either natural or synthetic, it has been found that uniform firmness of the brush is obtained by use of nylon bristles of different diameter. To equalize the firmness of the long and short bristles, the longer tufts 10 (FIG. 4) may be made of nylon of .012" diameter, with the shorter bristles being made of .009" diameter nylon. Because of the different length bristles, by using these nylon filaments, a brush of average overall medium firmness results. A softer texture may be achieved by using in combination .011" for the long bristles, and .008 nylon for the shorter bristles. A stiff or firm textured brush may be provided by using in the same manner .013" and .010 nylon. In accordance with this invention, the longer nylon bristles may range in diameter from .010"to .015", with the shorter nylon bristle diameters in the range .005" to .012", the relative diameters being selected so that the diameter of the longer bristles is greater than that of the shorter bristles. With nylon a difference in diameter of from .002" to .004 produces good results.
particles from between the teeth. a V I Having thus described this invention, what is claimed is:
In FIG. 4 is shown in 'operation a bristle block embodying this invention. The bristles are shown in a state of flexure pressing against the teeth in a downward stroke from thegums 14 to the teeth represented at 1 5. As shown, the uppeiy longer bristles 10 are flexed against the gums, while lower ones-areshown extending a substantial distance inwardly of the outer surface of the teeth 15, whilethe shorter bristles 16 are firmly engaged with the outer surface of the. teeth. Moreover, since the longer bristles are of greaterdiameter'than the remaining bristles of the brush, they are highly effective in dislodging food 1. Toothbrush comprising a brush back with a handle extending therefrom, abristle block in the form of a plurality of tufts extending from the bristle block and arranged in parallel rows of diiferentlength extending transversely of the handle forming an undulate surface of alternate ridges and concave surfaces, the outer ends of the filaments of the ridge forming tufts lying in substantially'the same plane and the concave surfaces between each of said ridge forming tufts being provided by a plurality of rows of tufts, having their outer ends lying a concave curva- V ture essentially the inverse of the human dental contour, the ridge forming tufts being composed of filaments of suificiently greater diameter than the filaments of the remaining tufts of the bristle block so that the bristle block 7 is characterized, by a substantially uniform-flexure.
References Cited by theiExaminer UNITED STATES ,VPATENTS 1,059,426 4/13 Barnes 15167 2,040,245 5/36 Crawford 15167 2,797,424 1 7/57 Olson 15-167 2,978,724 4/61 Gracian' 15l67 3,103,679 9/63 Clemens 15-156 3,120,670 2/64 Amodeo 15-167 ,C'HARLES A. WILLMUTIV-I, Primary Examiner.