Toothbrushes could someday deliver medication, caffeine and added breath fresheners. (Photo: Shutterstock.com)
Among the first things many people do in the morning is brush their teeth and then grab a cup of coffee, or vice versa. But a popular dental hygiene brand could someday change all that while also eliminating coffee stains.
Colgate filed a patent, recently made public, for an "oral implement" that would release a chemical into the mouth while a toothbrush is in use. There are actually several uses for the concept, which according to designs appears as a patch on the back of the head of the toothbrush, but delivering a hit of caffeine is one of them. Colgate mentions it for use in pain relief for teething children, but there could clearly be benefits for adults when it comes to caffeine later down the line.
Another type of chemical that could be released from such a patch, according to the application, is an "appetite suppressant for weight loss treatment."
"Thus, a wide variety of other chemicals which provide a medicinal or sensory response can be used with the oral care implement," the patent states.
To clarify which patch would deliver a certain type of chemical, Colgate envisions them each being represented by a different symbol.
"In each case, associated visuals may be present communicate the beneficial effect, such as the representation of a throbbing tooth for benzocaine, a human figure with a slimming waist line for the zo-caine types of medicine or an 'Rx' symbol for pain relief medication."
Concept designs for the "oral care implement." (Image: Colgate/U.S. Patent)
Although the patent doesn't mean that the concept will ever reach consumer's bathroom shelves, Motherboard called it a "startling innovation" because the method for cleaning one's teeth has gone relatively unchanged for centuries.
Motherboard also speculated that regulatory issues would need to be addressed at some point regarding embedding caffeine or other medications into an oral implement.
(H/T: Click Orlando)