This invention consists of a toothbrush designed for reaching and cleaning areas of high biofilm retention in CLP children. The toothbrush has 360◦ bristles and an angulation between the handle and the tip to facilitate the approach and access to the gap. With a small angle, the rotation of the brush is obtained not by the rotation of the handle on its own longitudinal axis, but by the semi-circumferential movement of the handle.
Bone and dental changes in children with CLP are associated with a high incidence of oral health problems. The anatomical and morphological alterations increase the accumulation of bacterial plaque and, further, increase the difﬁculty of its removal. Thus, the high prevalence of dental caries in CLP children is well documented. Although preventive measures related to dietary counseling and the use of antiseptic mouthwash help to minimize the problem, there is no substitute for good tooth brushing to effectively remove dental plaque. Even so, little attention has been given to a key issue—the toothbrush.
The design of this new hygiene tool takes into account aspects such as adaptability to the contour of the cleft and brushing material. Additionally, the degree of difﬁculty in the use of this toothbrush is the smallest possible. The use of 360◦ bristles allows the user to act on the brush handle with wide movements and produce a friction effect by rotation, without causing trauma to the tissues neither hurting sensitive areas. The angulation between the handle and the tip was designed to facilitate the approach and access to the gap. With this small angle, the rotation of the brush is obtained not by the rotation of the handle on its own longitudinal axis, but by the semi-circumferential movement of the handle. This movement is very similar to brushing with a conventional brush, a factor of greater adhesion and ease of implementation of the oral hygiene routine.
A functional prototype of the toothbrush has already been developed and validated in CLP users. University of Porto vision is the manufacture and sale by oral care industry of CLP adaptable toothbrushes. Our solution has the potential to be developed for other users, for instance, adults with no posterior teeth.