By Chris Nicholls
COPENHAGEN: Philips has filed three patent applications detailing specifications for a new type of toothbrush that replaces bristles with high pressure water jets.
The patents, filed with the World Intellectual Property Office, detail three technologies to be used with such a device – an optical measuring device to ensure water pressure does not exceed safe levels, a water temperature sensor and a ‘clean tooth’ sensor.
The water pressure sensor was important, Philips said, as six seconds at a water droplet speed of 70 metres per second would be enough to damage gums.
Any future toothbrush with the technologies would use a stream of water droplets, forced out at speed thanks to an integrated gas canister in the handle, Philips said. This would differ from other methods used previously, which forced water out of a swirling head at speed.
Philips claimed the gas-powered method would be gentler on gums.
In a further attempt to reduce damage from excess water pressure, Philips also said they would use a spray head with protruding ‘markers’ that the user would run over their teeth, maintaining the correct distance at all times.