Most of us don’t think of a toothbrush as a medical device. (I’m of course not talking about an electric or “smart” toothbrush, but rather the simplest version.) It’s as low-tech as you can get, dentists give them out for free, and if you practice good oral hygiene you’re using it at least twice a day without thinking of it as technology.
But like any other device, it’s subject to some wear and tear after long-term use and ceases to be as effective as when you removed it from the (always nra-impossible to open, for some reason) plastic packaging. Think about it — when’s the last time you replaced a toothbrush? Months ago? Years ago? Perhaps a look under the microscope to see how a toothbrush degrades over time will enlighten you.
The powerful microscope in the video below gives an excellent view of the toothbrush’s life cycle, and how it affects oral hygiene. Believe it or not, it’s the brand new one that initially has what looks like filth and layers on the bristles. These actually help to remove plaque, and the more you use it, the more that wears down. You’ll see that the old toothbrush (merely a few months old) is completely smooth, and worse at its intended purpose. I’m sure most of you haven’t given this a thought, so check out the video below! If toothbrushes aren’t compelling enough, the video also gives technical details on how the imagery was captured.