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Publication numberUS3918466 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 11, 1975
Filing dateJul 17, 1974
Priority dateJul 17, 1974
Publication numberUS 3918466 A, US 3918466A, US-A-3918466, US3918466 A, US3918466A
InventorsPeebles Jr John G
Original AssigneeJkc Products Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Disposable dental cleaning device
US 3918466 A
Abstract
A disposable dental floss cleaning unit is constructed from a blank comprising a panel having a score line therein defining substantially symmetrical side walls foldable about the score line into confronting relationship along the respective underside surfaces thereof. The confronting underside surfaces of the respective side walls may be fixedly connected, for instance, by application thereof of a suitable adhesive. An interior continuous score line within the body of the blank defines a removable area thereof substantially symmetrical about a plane passing through a score line. Across the removable area of the blank, at least one length of dental floss is tautly strung having its opposed ends fixedly connected to the blank. Upon removal of the removable area from the blank, the dental floss is accessible for use.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Peebles, Jr.

[ Nov. 11, 1975 Primary E.\'aminerG. E. McNeil] Attorney, Agent, or FirmBlum, Mascovitz, Friedman & Kaplan [57] ABSTRACT A disposable dental floss cleaning unit is constructed from a blank comprising a panel having a score line therein defining substantially symmetrical side walls foldable about the score line into confronting relationship along the respective underside surfaces thereof. The confronting underside surfaces of the respective side walls may be fixedly connected, for instance, by application thereof of a suitable adhesive. An interior continuous score line within the body of the blank defines a removable area thereof substantially symmetrical about a plane passing through a score line. Across the removable area of the blank, at least one length of dental floss is tautly strung having its opposed ends fixedly connected to the blank. Upon removal of the removable area from the blank, the dental floss is ac cessible for use.

8 Claims, 10 Drawing Figures US. Patent Nov. 11, 1975 Sheet 1 of 2 FIG. 5

1 DISPOSABLE DE TAL CLEANING E I E BACKGROUND or THE INVENTION.

mended dental health care procedure. Heretofore, I

however, public places such as restaurants and the like, have offered picks to their customers for the purpose of relieving distress caused by food particles lodged between the teeth. Picks of the type offered are generally considered unsatisfactory, because they carry sharp SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION' Generally speaking, in accordance with the inven- 7 tion, "a disposable dental floss cleaning unit is con structed from a blank comprising a panel having a score line therein defining substantially symmetrical side walls foldable about the score line into confronting relationship along the respective underside surfaces thereof. The confronting underside surfaces of the respective side walls may be fixedly connected, for instance, by application thereto of a suitable adhesive.

An interior continuous score line within the body of the blank defines a removable area thereof substantially symmetrical about a plane passing through the score line. 'Across the removable area of the blank, at least one length of dental floss is tautly strung having its opposed ends fixedly connected to'the blank-.Upon removal of the removable areafrom the blank, the dental floss is accessible for use.

In one embodiment of the invention, the length of the dental floss underlies the blank and is adhes'ively connected thereto in substantial alignment with at least a portion of the score line. In another embodiment of the invention, a length of dental floss respectively overlies each side wall of the blank and opposed ends thereof are respectively connected thereto. Each length of dental floss is proximate and substantially parallel to the fold line of the blank. I

The device may be overwrapped with a removable sterile wrapper until use thereof. Preferably, the device is slidable from the wrapper for use. After the device is used for itsintended purpose, it may be disposed of.

It is, therefore, an object of the invention to provide a disposable, low cost, compact, sterile dental floss unit for relieving distress caused by food particles lodged between the teeth,

It is another object of the invention to provide a mass distributable disposable dental floss unit.,

A further object of the invention is to provide a novel blank from which a disposable dental floss unit may be fabricated.

Still other objects and advantages of the invention will, in part, be obvious and will, in part, be apparent from the specification. v

The invention accordingly comprises the features of construction, combinations of elements, and arrangement of parts which will be exemplified in the constructions hereinafter set forth, and the scope of the invention will be indicated in the claims.

' BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS For a fuller understanding of the invention, reference is had to the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:

FIG. 1 is a top plan view of a blank constructed in accordance with the invention; I

FIG. 2 is a bottom plan view of the blank shown in FIG. 1;"

FIG. 3 is a perspective view of the blank illustrated in FIG. 1 showing the side walls thereof folded into confronting relationship;

FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the folded embodiment shown in FIG. 3, wherein the removable area of the blank is removed for access to the dental floss;

FIG. 4a is a perspective view of another embodiment constructed in accordance with the invention;

FIG. 5 is a cross sectional view taken along line 55 of FIG. 4;

FIG. 6 is a cross sectional view taken along line 66 of FIG. 4;

FIG. 7 is a front elevational view of the folded embodiment illustrated in FIG. 3 having a sterile wrapper ng;

FIG. 8 is a cross sectional view taken along line 88 of FIG. 7; and

FIG. 9 is a cross sectional view taken along line 99 of FIG. 7.

' DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS Referring now to the drawings, a panel 10 is longitudinally scored along a line 13 to define a pair of substantially symmetrical side walls 11 and 12 therein. As best seen in FIG. 3, side walls 11 and 12 are respectively foldable about score line 13 into confronting relationship along the respective underside surfaces thereof. Respective underside surfaces of side walls 11 and 12 are coated with an adhesive 16 as best seen in FIG. 2, for fixedly connecting the confronted surfaces.

The depth of the scoring along line 13 is somewhat less than the width of panel 10 for thereby providing a hinged connection between side walls 11 and 12. The depth of the scoring along line 13 is, however, substantially uniform and in the folded condition of the panel, best seen in FIG. 3, the hinged connection is substantially planar. Referring again to FIG. 3, the planar hinged connection is substantially perpendicular to respective planes of side walls 11 and 12.

An interior continuous score line 14 within the body of panel 10 extends fully through the width thereof and defines a removable contiguous area 11, 12' of respective side walls 11 and 12. Removable 'area 11', I2 is substantially symmetrical about a plane passing through score line 13. As best seen in FIGS. 4 and 7, respective sections 11', 12' of the removable area are provided with respective pairs of spaced recesses along the respective peripheries thereof. Each recess is alignablewith a nub'extension 20, 20' defined in the continuous interior edge 22 defined in respective side walls 11 and 12 by score line 14. Therefore, area 11', 12' is selectively removable from panel 10 by application thereto of an outward pressure for releasing the recesses thereof from interfitting, respective, nub extensions 20, 20 provided in continuous edge 22.

With particular reference to the embodiment shown in FIGS. 1-4, a single length of dental floss 15 is tautly strung across removable area 11', 12' of panel 10. The strand of floss underlies panel 10 and the removable area thereof. Adhesive l6 coated on the underside of panel 10 fixedly connects dental floss 15 thereto. The strand of floss is aligned with the score line 13 and adhesively connected to the underside of panel 10 substantially contiguously with the hinged connection defined therein. It is a critical aspect of the construction of the dental floss cleaning unit that adhesive is not applied to the underside of removable area 11', 12'. In the folded condition of the blank as best seen in FIG. 3, dental floss 15 is adhesively secured between side walls 11 and 12 and a usable portion thereof is overfitted by removable area 11, 12. Upon disengagement of area 11, 12' from panel 10, a usable portion of dental floss 15 is visible and the removal space defined thereby provides an access space whereby the floss portion may be suitably inserted between teeth of a user thereof. The distance between floss l and the vertex of the access space as defined by continuous edge 22 in panel is suitably determined to exceed the length of a users teeth to facilitate the use of the device.

Referring now to FIG. 4a which shows an alternate embodiment of a device constructed in accordance with the invention, like numerals designate like members as used in connection with the embodiment heretofore described. The general construction of the blank is substantially identical with that of the prior embodiment, except that the removable area thereof has a somewhat different shape and continuous edge 22' as seen upon the removal thereof defines a substantially U-shaped access space. According to the construction of this embodiment, two strands of dental floss and 15 are employed. Each of the strands of floss overlies a respective side wall 11, 12 of the panel and opposed ends thereof 21, 21 are respectively fixedly connected to the side wall as by stitching. Each strand 15, 15' is arranged proximate the hinged connection between side walls 11 and 12 and substantially parallel thereto. As seen in FIG. 4a, the device is in condition for use. Prior to use, a removable area is releasably connected in the access space between respective strands 15, 15. In all other details of construction, this embodiment of the device is identical with the embodiment heretofore described above.

The device in its unused folded condition, as best seen in FIG. 3, may be overwrapped with a sterile wrapper as best seen with reference to FIGS. 7-9. The wrapper may have open ends for sliding the device therethrough and may comprise a sheath for overfitting the device. Respective ends 18 and 18' of the sheath may be secured in overlying-underlying relationship by application thereto of a suitable adhesive 19.

In practice, the device may be removed from the sheath and the removable area thereof may be releasably connected for use of the visible portion of the dental floss. The access space provided by releasing the connection of the removable area allows convenient use of the device. After the device is used, it may be disposed of. While the blank may be fabricated of a large number of suitable materials, it is preferably fabricated of a paperboard. Any suitable adhesive may be employed for confronting side walls of the panel, pro- 5 vided it is non-toxic to a user.

It will thus be seen that the objects set forth above, among those made apparent from the preceding description, are efficiently attained and, since certain changes may be made in the above constructions without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention, it is intended that all matter contained in the above description or shown in the accompanying drawings shall be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.

It is also to be understood that the following claims are intended to cover all of the generic and specific features of the invention herein described, and all statements of the scope of the invention which, as a matter of language, might be said to fall therebetween.

What is claimed is:

l. A disposable dental floss cleaning unit comprising a panel having a score line therein, a pair of substantially symmetrical side walls defined by said score line, said side walls being foldable about said score line into confronting relationship along respective underside surfaces thereof, said confronting underside surfaces of said respective side walls being fixedly connected, one to the other, a removable area of said panel defined by a continuous score line within the body of said panel, means for releasably connecting said removable area of said panel to the body of said panel, and at least one length of dental floss having opposed ends fixedly connected to said panel, at least a portion of said dental floss being strung across said removable area of said panel.

2. The unit as claimed in claim 1, wherein said at least one length of dental floss underlies said panel and is adhesively connected thereto in substantial alignment with at least a portion of said score line.

3. The unit as claimed in claim 1, including two discrete lengths of dental floss, each discrete length thereof overlying a respective side wall of said panel, opposed ends of each discrete length of dental floss being connected to a respective side wall, each length of dental floss being proximate and substantially parallel to said score line provided in said panel.

4. The unit as claimed in claim 1, including a hinged connection between respective side walls of said panel, said hinged connection being defined by a substantially uniform depth of said score line.

5. The unit as claimed in claim 1, wherein said means for releasably connecting said removable area of said panel to the body of said panel comprises a plurality of recesses provided in the periphery of said removable area, and a corresponding plurality of nub extensions provided in a continuous interior edge of said panel, each recess being alignable and engageable with a corresponding nub extension.

6. The unit as claimed in claim 1, including a sheath overfitting said unit, said unit being slidable from said sheath for use thereof.

7. The unit as claimed in claim 4, wherein said hinged connection is substantially planar and substantially perpendicular to respective planes of said side walls.

8. The unit as claimed in claim 1, wherein said removable area of said panel overlies at least a portion of said at least one length of dental floss.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2771085 *Sep 25, 1953Nov 20, 1956John S FlemingDental cleaner
US3783883 *May 16, 1972Jan 8, 1974Alexander DCombination dental floss holder and toothpick
US3802445 *Sep 6, 1972Apr 9, 1974Wesley WTooth cleaning appliance and methods of manufacturing same
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4327755 *Oct 31, 1980May 4, 1982Endelson Robert ADental floss dispenser in credit card format
US4440184 *Jun 25, 1982Apr 3, 1984Smith Eric LDental flossing device
US4460002 *Dec 18, 1981Jul 17, 1984Burdette Jr Douglas CDisposable dental floss applicator system
US4881560 *Jun 9, 1988Nov 21, 1989Eric BlankDispenser for dental floss
US5014725 *Aug 14, 1989May 14, 1991Linda S. PatscotDental floss applicator
US5101843 *Jan 14, 1991Apr 7, 1992Peng Chien LunDental floss with holder used in fixed orthodontic appliance
US5246021 *Feb 14, 1992Sep 21, 1993Katz Harry SDisposable floss pick and method of manufacture
US5388600 *Sep 8, 1993Feb 14, 1995Gillette Canada, Inc.Stackable flosser
US20060150999 *Jan 13, 2005Jul 13, 2006Sheldon KnellerDental plaque-reducing device
US20080127992 *Nov 30, 2006Jun 5, 2008Leonard PinchukArray of Dental Flossers Coupled to Each Other by Frangible Links
US20110203608 *Aug 25, 2011Carlos RiveraInterdental Space Cleaner
DE4337790A1 *Nov 5, 1993Mar 16, 1995Christine SteinhardtGripping device for a dental floss thread
EP0090106A1 *Mar 29, 1982Oct 5, 1983Robert A. EndelsonDental floss dispenser
Classifications
U.S. Classification132/323
International ClassificationA61C15/00, A61C15/04
Cooperative ClassificationA61C15/046
European ClassificationA61C15/04E