It is no great secret that the rise of the internet and mobile technology has transformed business in many ways. However, it seems that dentistry is one area that is a little slow to catch up in some respects. While some practices have embraced the new trends, utilising such innovative practices as creating their own mobile phone apps, others have not.
However, a new toothbrush has been released that pairs the two fields quite nicely. Proctor & Gamble’s new Oral-B SmartSense toothbrush combines top-notch dental care with hi-tech gadgetry, and may be the sign of a new era for dentistry in general.
Dentists can help their patients program the toothbrush, and the smartphone app that comes with it, in order to pay extra attention to the areas of the mouth that need it most. The SmartSense can help patients brush for the correct amount of time, tell them when to move on to the next part of their mouth, and even warn them if they’re brushing too hard.
The toothbrush communicates with a smartphone app via bluetooth. When a patient starts brushing, a countdown begins on their phone to tell them how long they have left to brush. The phone will vibrate when the time has come to move on to a new area.
If the user ends up brushing too hard, which can cause damage to gums and even enamel, the SmartSense sends a signal to the app to warn them. Overall, this should help patients to brush for the full two minutes they are supposed to, while making sure no area of the mouth gets missed.
The brush comes with six programmable settings, which dentists can help set for their patients. For example, if a patient had a high buildup of plaque on their front teeth, their dentist could program the app to spend more time on that area.
Michael Cohen-Dumani, global associate director for Oral-B, said to Reuters: “Dentists always tell us: ‘People do a great job in the week before they come to visit us and in the week after they visit us. But nothing can hide the fact that when we look inside the mouth we can see all the areas they miss.'”