Proper dental care is very important to an individual's overall health and general well-being. Additionally, proper brushing can significantly reduce the expense and discomfort of dental restorations, cleanings, and examinations - which is why there are now many mechanical aids available for cleaning teeth. In general these are variations on the classic toothbrush with the addition of reciprocating or vibrating bristles, which aid in the removal of food particles and bacterial plaque which are lodged between or adhered to the teeth. These devices universally come with removable and interchangeable heads to allow the user to replace worn bristles and use specialized heads to clean particular areas of their mouth.
In this invention, I propose a full-mouth attachment which can be used to clean or polish all of the user's teeth in one go. By using 3D scanning or medical imaging technology and rapid manufacturing, these attachments could be made on a case-by-case basis by the user's dentist and his staff. Alternatively, an attachment could be made without imaging or scanning by making a mold of the user's mouth. This would allow the attachment to be fitted precisely to the user's teeth, providing a superior method of cleaning the unique features there. A common problem with hand-controlled brushes that clean only one spot at a time are the development of 'problem areas' - areas of the mouth that don't receive adequate brushing due to the idiosyncrasies of the user or the difficulty of reaching them with a hand-controlled brush. By shaping the attachment to fit the user's mouth and apply adequate cleaning pressure everywhere, this and similar problems can be eliminated. By having the attachment fabricated at the user's dentist's office it could be checked for wear at the user's routine dental appointments and replaced when necessary.
By using a variety of fits and materials several attachments could me made to accommodate different electric toothbrushes with different cleaning technologies. For example, an efficient ultrasonic medium could be molded and embedded with bristles. In basic appearance it might look similar to a sports mouth guard with bristles and a socket for the electric toothbrush. A mechanically reciprocating attachment might use a solid or semisolid outer shell with a liquid core, allowing the reciprocating action of the electric toothbrush to be be transmitted to the bristles hydraulically. Other methods might include the use of miniature mechanical linkages, tiny embedded motors or vibrators, and a device that cleans the teeth by pumping high pressure water through channels in the attachment. A stand-alone device might also be possible, eliminating the need for a standard electric toothbrush. In any of these cases a bristle-less attachment might be used with baking soda paste or other abrasive compound to polish the teeth and remove tartar.