Generally speaking, any “device” that is used to clean a person’s teeth is a toothbrush. Toothbrush has been around for a long time, no matter the form or the name.
Now, let’s go back to history where it all began and how it is now.
The earliest form of toothbrush have been in existence as early as the Ancient Civilizations. They used a “chew stick” which was a thin twig with a tattered end. These “chew sticks” were rubbed against the teeth.
Bristle toothbrush was not invented until 1498 in China. They are similar to the type we are using today, but they used the thick, coarse hair taken from the back of a hog’s neck as the bristles and bones or bamboos as handles.
The first recorded use of the actual word “toothbrush” was in 1690 as written by a man named Anthony Wood in his autobiography. It may actually be true that people have been using the word “toothbrush” way before that but this was just the first time that we see the actual word.
The first U.S patent for toothbrushes was granted to H.N. Wadsworth. Mass-produced toothbrushes becomes a norm around 1885.
The first nylon bristles were introduced by Dupont de Nemours. It was only a matter of time before these nylon bristles made their way to the toothbrush industry. Nylon has become an instant hit because people would rather use these softer bristles over animal hairs.
Now we fast forward to today. Nylon bristle toothbrushes are still the most popular kind that are being used world wide. From hard, medium, soft to extra soft bristles. In addition to that, we now have toothbrushes that comes in different shapes, automatic toothbrushes and mouthpiece toothbrushes.