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History of First Toothbrush 1938 | Toothbrush Technology 2012

Updated on May 9, 2012

Got a Toothbrush????

Toothbrush Recorded History as Early as 3000 B.C.

Library of Congress research states that our modern day toothbrush was invented in 1938. Earlier forms evolved since ancient times around 3000 BC. Ancients would use chew sticks which consisted of a thin twig with a frayed end. They would rub the frayed end against the teeth.

An instrument resembling a modern toothbrush constructed from bone or bamboo implanted with stiff bristles made from coarse boar hair appeared in China in 1498. These boar bristles were apparently used up until 1938. This is when Frenchman Dupont de Nemours introduced nylon bristles which would permanently replace the boar hair; though you can still find them for sale on The first nylon toothbrush was called Doctor West's Miracle Toothbrush . It is hard to believe, but most Americans did not brush their teeth until Army soldiers brought back habits of tooth brushing after the war to their homes . So American families were influenced to practice daily hygiene learned through the disciplined daily regimens practiced by WW11 soldiers. The demand for the the nylon toothbrush caused a complete marketing success.


Toothbrush Fun-Facts

  • The first mass-produced toothbrush made by W. Addis in England around 1780
  • The first American to patent a toothbrush was H.N. Wadsworth (patent #18,653) in 1857. Mass production of toothbrushes began in America in 1885
  • First electric toothbrushes were introduced in 1939. They were marketed in 1960 by the Squibb Co with a brand name of Broxodent.
  • Interplak was the first rotary action toothbrush for home use in 1987
  • 94% of Americans say they brush nightly while only 81% say they brush first thing in the morning


First Electric Toothbrush Produced in 1939

The first electric toothbrush was produced in 1939 in Switzerland. Squibb marketed it in 1960.  It was called the Broxodent. General Electric introduced a rechargable cordless model in 1961. Then in 1987, the Interplak was the first rotary action electrical toothbrush available for home use and so the marketing competition for oral hygiene continues. The toothbrush was accompanied by other product concoctions of toothpaste, dental floss, toothpicks, and rinses.

Waterpik Water Flosser

Undesirable to use regular Denta Floss??? YOU HAVE GOT TO GET....WATERPIK ULTRA WATER FLOSSER

Prevention is Key to Dental Health

It is important to learn how to brush properly for the prevention of dental conditions like gingivitis, gum recession, and tooth decay. If you are an aggressive toothbrusher like I ame, you will suffer from sensitive teeth because of condition called tooth abrasion. Incorrectly brushing your teeth will wear away the surface of the teeth. As a result, the root surfaces will be exposed. Hot and cold food and drinks will be very uncomfortable and sometimes down right painful. If you have this condition switch to a soft bristled brush, it will help. The use of toothpaste designed to reduce sensitivity will also work great.

Flossing is the second most important daily activity. Though most people hate doing it, flossing will save your teeth from decay due to food lodged between tight teeth and plaque buildup. There are some fine electric flossers that are excellent at getting the job done.

Brushing the right way is extremely important....Let's just do it!!!

Do not forget to replace your toothbrush every six months; it is worn out whether it looks like it or not. Better yet...get a Sonicare!!! It is totally awesome.


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