Some think of toothbrushes as being man’s best friend and that this award is not actually occupied by dogs. In modern times, people have indeed voted that toothbrush is one of the greatest inventions that we cannot live without. In surveys, it beats microwaves, automobiles, and television – but it is interesting to look at the history of the toothbrush and really breakdown where it came from.
One thing that you may find surprising is that humans have always sought out ways to brush our teeth. Since the beginning of time, we as a species have held on to our trusted companion that can help keep our teeth clean. The first records ever of a toothbrush come from the ancient civilizations such as the Babylon Empire. And though these were not the first humans to walk the earth, historians put down their records to the fact that they tended to document everything – whereas earlier civilizations did not. So the toothbrush will most likely have been in existence long beforehand.
Now, these first toothbrushes were very rudimentary and we often refer to them as chewsticks. They would be frayed on one end with a rock and the other side would be sharp to be used as a toothpick. As early as 3500 BC these sorts of chewsticks have been found buried in graves, also they have been seen in Egyptian drawings.
The modern toothbrush that we have come to love so much today, was first seen during early Chinese dynasties. The Chinese Tang Dynasty to be exact, where bones and bamboo were used as the handle. Tiny holes would be drilled through the handle and for the brush hog hair was used. Though Europeans did not like how rough hog hair was so started to replace them with horse hair.
We had to wait until 1935 when Nylon was invented for toothbrushes with hair to finally be replaced. Nylon brushes are much more sanitary and healthy than the hair equivalent. So in 1938 nylon brush toothbrushes were mass produced, and the rest as they say it is history.