The toothbrush we all use every day to keep our smile shining bright has undergone a remarkable transformation throughout time. The earliest known toothbrush was used approximately 5,000 years ago and was a simple thin twig with a frayed end. These thin sticks were rubbed on teeth to remove food debris. As time progressed toothbrushes were handcrafted from bone, wood or ivory and featured bristles sourced from pigs, boars or other animals. It wasn’t until the late 1930’s that nylon bristles were introduced. These toothbrushes had flat heads, medium-soft bristles and smooth handles made of wood.
Today, there are a variety of choices when it comes to the toothbrush. Stores sell all types that vary greatly in design. There are several choices in handles including smooth, non-slip grip and handles with flexible necks. Consumers can also choose from different shaped heads and styles of bristles such as flat, ripped or dome-shaped.
With all of these choices how do you know which toothbrush to choose? Most dental professionals agree that a soft-bristled brush is best for removing plaque and debris from your teeth. Small-headed brushes are also preferable, since they can better reach all areas of the mouth, including hard-to-reach back teeth. The American Dental Association (ADA) also recommends buying a toothbrush that has the ADA Seal of Acceptance on it. The ADA seal ensures that the toothbrush is safe and effective to use.
When selecting a toothbrush it is important to choose one that is most comfortable to you. The best toothbrush is one that fits your mouth and allows you to reach all teeth easily. Keep this in mind when you make your next toothbrush purchase and happy brushing!