Toothbrushes – A Little History


Toothbrushes in terms of components have pretty much stayed consistent throughout the years. A small brush at one end of the handle used to clean the teeth and the other bamboo toothbrush bulk

 just a handle. Now days the bristles are varying is size, shape and bristle type. The most popular and most recommended type of toothbrush is the “soft” since most firm bristled brushes are hard on your enamel and will irritate the gums. The bristles of a toothbrush are usually made of synthetic fibers but in today’s times with everyone wanting “natural” there are those types as well.

In history many have use varying forms of toothbrushes. Indian medicine used items from a nee tree to create toothbrushes. People also used baking soda and or chalk on their teeth to get them clean. The first toothbrush which looks similar to the toothbrush of today was invented in China back in the late 1400s. The toothbrush consisted of hairs from a hog’s neck which were attached to a piece of bamboo.

The use of the world toothbrush was to be back in 1690. The first mass produced toothbrush was created and distributed by William Addis of England back in 1780. The toothbrush was first patented back in 1857 by H. N. Wadsworth with mass production starting in 1885. An advanced design which contained a bone type handle with holes in it which is where the Siberian Boar hairs bristles were placed. After some use it was discovered that boar hair was not the ideal material to use for toothbrushes. The problem was that boar hair attracted bacteria and had difficulty drying and the bristles would not stay attached to the brush. After WWII the idea of brushing your teeth became more popular due to the daily regiment activity during the war. This practice came back with soldiers after the war.

In 1938 DuPont replaced natural bristles to synthetic material, typically nylon. This new type of brush went on sale back in February 1938. Bristol-Myers developed the first electric toothbrush called the Broxodent at the ADA back in 1959.

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