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A little makeover robot brushes your teeth, flosses and kills bacteria




Like many daunting tasks, there may soon be a way to outsource your tooth brushing to your robot. Engineers at the University of Pennsylvania have developed a microrobot system that can be reshaped to form bristles and dental floss. It not only removes plaque, but also releases antibacterial agents to kill bad bacteria.

Daily brushing and dental floss can be annoying, and even those who stick to the routine can miss the area and have problems. Part of the problem is that toothbrushes do not take into account the differences in tooth shape and spacing between different people.

The new system solves this problem by effectively shape-shifting. It is composed of iron oxide nanoparticles and can be assembled into various structures or controlled using a magnetic field. In this way, the particles can be placed in the shape of bristles to brush plaque from the surface of the teeth or rub between the teeth with finer dental floss-like strands.

However, these microrobots do more than just mechanically clean teeth.Iron oxide Activates hydrogen peroxideCauses a reaction that produces free radicals that kill the bacteria and the sticky biofilms they form on the teeth.

Infographic showing how the new microrobot tooth cleaning system works

Infographic showing how the new microrobot tooth cleaning system works

Melissa Papas / Pen Engineering

The team first tested the system with flat slabs of materials such as artificial teeth to restrain the movement of the microrobot. Next, we moved on to more realistic terrain control of the 3D-printed tooth model. Finally, the microrobot was tested on real human teeth and attached to a device placed to sit in the mouth.

Tests have shown that these microrobots can efficiently remove plaque and biofilm and reduce pathogens below detectable levels. The team also showed that by adjusting the magnetic field, the stiffness and length of the bristles can be precisely controlled. This allows you to create a gum-friendly, soft tip that is hard enough to clean your teeth.

Researchers have found that the customizability of this microrobot system can better clean people’s teeth, and its hands-free potential is that people with reduced fine motor skills still take care of their oral health. Says it may be possible.

It is not yet known what this system will look like on a commercial device, but researchers are investigating. A device that fits your mouth It could be similar to some others Rapid tooth cleaning system We have seen.other Microrobot tested Recent tooth cleaning, removal of infections from the inside for a more effective root canal.

New research published in journal ACSNano..

sauce: University of Pennsylvania




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