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Ancient Toothbrushes

The very first toothbrush was introduced around 3500BC. These toothbrushes are in the form of “chewing sticks”. These sticks are taken from trees such as Garcinia kola and Govania lupiloides.The ends of a stick are chewed on until the fibres of the wood have frayed and take the form of a brush, which can then be used to clean teeth. This type of toothbrush was used by the Egyptians and Babylonians, and was probably the ancestors of the Miswak toothbrushes which are used the same way as chewing sticks. The difference is that they are made from the branches of the Salvadora persica tree, which have healing and antiseptic qualities. Miswak is still used today and even considered to be superior to modern tooth brushes by some. It is especially popular amongst Muslim communities.


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