US 3593425 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent inventor Seymourltobinson  References Cited A l N 2123; UNITED STATES PATENTS PP v Filed Sept 10, 1969 3,375,583 4/1968 Blank etal 32/26 Patented July 20, 1971 Primary Examiner- Robert Peshock Assignee Hydrosonlc Corporation Att0rney-Lloyd J. Andres Miami, Fla.
ABSTRACT: An, apparatus for rapidly cleaning and removing plaque and calculus from the teeth without damage to the enamel and injury to the gums, consisting of a device for hand igfifizif TOOTH-CLEANING manipulation containing an electronic ultrasonic transducer cou led to a uick-replaceable cleaning ap licator formed 5 Chlms, 12 Drawln Fi p q P from weapresistant plastic material. The handle of the device [1.8. CI 32/58 includes channel means for conducting a flow of pressurized Int. Cl. A6lc 3/01 water to the applicator. The device is coupled to a source of Field of Search... 32/58, 57, electronic ultrasonic energy and a source of pressurized water 26 by flexible conductors and tubing, respectively.
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' SHEET 1 [1F 2 INVENTOR. SEYMOUR ROBINSON PATENTED JUL 20 I97! SHEET 2 [IF 2 INVENTOR. SEYMOUR ROBINSON I IIIII'II-llI-lll.
ELECTRIC ULTRASONIC TOOTH-CLEANING APPARATUS This invention relates in general to apparatus for dental hygiene and more particularly to a hand-manipulated electronic ultrasonic device with a plastic applicator for rapidly removing calculus from the teeth without injury to the enamel thereof.
Reference is had to applicant's pending application for Electric Ultrasonic Toothbrush, Ser. No. 70l,963.
Prior to this invention, the accumulation of plaque and calculus on the teeth required time consuming skillful removal by the manual use of several types of metal instruments which are prone to injure the tooth enamel or gums unless used with great care and skill during the cleaning operation, usually performed by a professional dentist or hygienist.
The present invention overcomes the above objections and disadvantages by the provision of an electronically motivated device for ultrasonically oscillating an applicator made from tough plastic material terminating in a tip shaped for cleaning the teeth rapidly and efficiently with layman skill without danger of damage to the enamel thereof or injury to the gums, the construction of which is a principal object of the invention.
Another object of the invention is the provision of an electronically motivated ultrasonic device for hand manipulation including a quick-detachable cleaning applicator which is pressure-coupled to a transducer for providing longitudinal ultrasonic oscillation when energized.
A further object of the invention is the provision of a water channel through the length of the device which an outlet oriflee positioned to maintain a preadjusted flow of pressurized water on the applicator when in use.
Another object of the invention is the provision of an ultrasonic tooth-cleaning device with provision for convenient interchange or replacement of cleaning applicators and simultaneously coupling channels for the flow of water onto the cleaning tip of the applicator.
These and other objects and advantages in one embodiment of the invention are described and shown in the following specification and drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 illustratedthe ultrasonic device and the source of u]- trasonic electronic energy.
FIG. 2 is an enlargedside cross-sectional elevation taken through section line 2-2, FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a cross-sectional end view taken through section line 33, FIG. 1.
FIG. 4 is a rear cross-sectional elevation taken through section line 4-4, FIG. 2.
FIG. 5 is a front cross-sectional elevation taken through section line 5-5, FIG. 2.
FIG. 6 is an enlarged front right-hand perspective view 0 the cleaning applicator assembly shown in FIG. 2.
FIG. 7 is an enlarged left-hand perspective view of the applicator assembly shown in FIG. 6.
FIG. 8 is a side view of an alternate form of device shown in FIG. 1 with a portion thereof broken away.
FIG. 9 is a front elevation of the device shown in FIG. 8.
FIG. 10 is a fragmentary bottom plan view of the device shown in FIG. 8. I
FIG. 11 is a side elevation of an alternate device with a portion broken away including a brush-type applicator assembly.
FIG. 12 is a rear cross-sectional view taken through section line,l2-l2, FIG. 11.
FIG. 1 shows a handle means in the form of a tubular casing l of the ultrasonic teeth-cleaning device or handpiece adapted to be hand-manipulated and provided with a threaded rear closure cap 2 and a threaded water-conducting frontal head 3 extending over the outer portion of thecleaning tool or applicator 20, which has an ofiset abrading tip portion 4, terminating in a relatively sharp edge for removing plaque or cal- .culus'from teeth. The applicator member includes portions 20, 21, 22, and 23 terminating and shaped into the cleaning tip portion 4, which may be made from one of a variety of plastic material of predetermined appropriate properties, such as nylon and Delrin.
When the device is limited to use byv professional operators the tip of the applicator, may be made of wear-resistant metal.
A well known electronic ultrasonic oscillator assembly 5, shown in FIG. 1, is adapted to be energized from a standard electric outlet by a power cord 6 and is provided with control knobs 7 and 8 for controlling the frequency and intensity of the electronic ultrasonic output energy, respectively, applied to the device by a dual conductor cord 9. A tubing 10 secured in the rear end of a water channel ridge ll, integral with casing I, is connected to a controlled source of pressurized water, not shown.
Referring to FIG. 2, the casing 1 has cylindrical bores 12 and 13 with the rear end thereof internally threaded to mate with threaded on the rear cap 2, as shown. A well known synthetic ceramic-type tubular ultrasonic transducer 14, such as one made from zirconate-lead titanate, is laterally stabilized in both bores 12 and 13 by an elastomer O-ring 15 which is positioned around the transducer and rests against a shoulder formed by the junction of bores 12 and 13. The rear end of the transducer is adapted to rest against a shoulder 16 on the inner side of cap 2 coaxial with bore 12. The two conductors in the power input core 9 are connected to suitable terminals 17 and 18 on the inner and outer sides of the transducer 14 at the lower end portion thereof and the cord extends through the cap 2 and is strain-relieved in cap 2 by a clip 19, as shown.
An important feature of this invention resides in the construction of the applicator 20 which includes a coaxial conical body portion 21 and a cylindrical flange portion 22 which flange portion is integral with a rear coaxial cylindrical portion 23 of smaller diameter for coaxially engaging the front end of the transducer. The cylindrical portion 23 is slidably inserted in the bore of the transducer and the planar shoulder 24 of the applicator is positioned against the planar front end of the transducer 14.
A cylindrical resilient elastomer, coupling and sealing washer or collar 25, made from material such as rubber or synthetic material such as Neoprene and having a smaller cylindrical extension 26, is fitted over the conical body portion 21' of the applicator and against a shoulder 27 on the outer side of the applicator flange 22.
FIGS. 1 and 2 illustrate a water-conducting bore 28, in ridge II with the outlet terminating in the front planar end of the casing 1, better shown in FIG. 3. The inlet of the bore 28 includes a larger bore 29 for receiving and sealing therein a flexible water supply tubing 10.
Referring to FIG. 4, the rear side of the coupling collar 25 has a coaxial circular recess 30 through which three parallel which terminate in an arcuate recess 32 on the front side of collar 25.
Referring to FIG. 2, the closure head 3 is provided with internal threads which engage the external threads on the front end portion of the casing 1, as shown, which will compress the collar 25 and urge the flange portion 22 of the applicator 20 into firm contact against the outer end of the transducer 14. The collar 25 is provided with an integral projection 34 which engages a mating recess in head 3 for maintaining register 0 the collar with the head.
Referring to FIGS. 2 and 5, the head 3 has a water channel 33 therein which has intermediate and end outlets for projecting water along the applicator 20.
Referring to FIGS. 4 and 7, and integral projection 34 is provided on the periphery of the collar 25 for engagement with a corresponding recess 35 in head 3 for maintaining a 32 will permit water to flow from the outlet 28 into recess 30 and through holes 31 into recess 32 and thence into the inlet of channel 33 and from the two outlets thereof onto the applicator 20.
Referring to FIGS. 8, 9, and 10, the head 30 the applicator 20a are considerably longer than similar elements 3 and 20, shown in FIG. 2, to provide for ease of cleaning rear molars. These elements are interchangeable with corresponding elements shown in FIG. 2.
it has been found that the length of the applicator must be a nonfractional multiple of the wavelength of the selected ultrasonic frequency of the oscillation to obtain maximum energy from the abrading tip or the brush-type applicators.
Referring to FIGS. 11 and l2,'the alternate head 3b is provided for covering an alternate applicator 20b, which terminates in a toothbrush 36. The head 3b includes a channel 33b having an inlet bore 28 and with a water outlet through the applicator 20b, as shown.
In operation and under the assumption that the oscillator assembly 5 is energized and the frequency and intensity of oscillation is adjusted to determined values and the tubing is connected to a source of controlled pressurized water, then the applicator will be oscillated longitudinally at an ultrasonic frequency in the general order of 30,000 cycles per second and water will flow through the channel 33 onto and over the applicator. When the working and 4 is moved over the tooth requiring cleaning, the plaque or calculus will be rapidly abraded therefrom without injury to the enamel and the related gum.
It is important to note that the coupling collar maintains the integral portion 22 of the applicator 20 into pressure contact with the outer end of the transducer 14 and'thus the longitudinal oscillation from the transducer is directly transmitted to the applicator against the restraining action of the collar 25.
It is also to be noted that when the head 3 is tightened sufficiently to urge the elastomer and the shoulder 24 into tight contact with the transducer, any inaccurate rotation of the head 3 with respect to the casing 1 will not adversely affect the flow of water from the cap by reason of the channels provided by recesses and 32 described.
It is be noted that one of the several well-known quickrelease bayonet-type closure means may be substituted for the threaded means for securing the head to the casing l which would provide accurate register of the head 3 with handle 1 and would eliminate the recesses 30 and 32 in collar 25 and provide for a single hole 31 therethrough for water conduction to the head.
This invention comprehends modifications which come within the teachings and spirit of the above specification.
Having described my invention, 1 claim:
I. An ultrasonic device for cleaning teeth comprising a means forming a tubular handle including a closure means at the rear end thereof,
an elongated electronic ceramic-type transducer positioned within said handle in spaced relation from the inner wall thereof with the rear end of said transducer engaged against the inner side of said closure means,
a detachable applicator of predetermined length positioned substantially colinear with said transducer including flange means at the rear end thereof operatively positioned around and against the front end of said transducer with the front end of said applicator terminating in an offset abrading tip,
a resilient collar on said applicator positioned against the front side of said flange means,
a front closure head detachably secured to the front end'of said handle with a circular shoulder therein coaxially positioned against the front side of said collar for urging said flange means of said applicator against the said front end of said transducer and for holding said applicator in said colinear position,
a source of electronic ultrasonic energy for energizing said transducer,
a pair of conductors connecting said transducer with said source of energy whereby the said front end of said transducer will transmit effective longitudinal ultrasonic oscillation to said applicator against the resilient restraining action ofsaid collar for cleaning teeth with said tip.
2. The construction recited in claim 1 including an elastomer band tensioned around said transducer normal the axis thereof and with the outer periphery thereof against the said inner wall of said handle for restraining said transducer in said spaced relation with said wall and permitting a longitudinal oscillation thereof.
3. in an ultrasonic tooth-cleaning device of the character described means forming a hollow handle including a longitudinal bore along one outer side of said handle for conducting pressurized water,
a cylindrical ceramic transducer positioned within said handle adapted and constructed for longitudinal ultrasonic oscillation of the front end thereof when energized,
a flexible conduit connected at one end to the rear inlet of said bore,
a detachable applicator substantially colinear with said transducer including a flange means on the rear end thereof operatively positioned against the front end of said transducer with the front end portion of said applicator terminating in an offset abrading tip,
a resilient collar on said applicator coaxially positioned against the front side of said flange means and having a water passage therethrough parallel with and offset from the axis thereof,
a front closure head means detachably secured to the front end of said handle with a coaxial shoulder therein for coaxial compression of the front side of said collar for urging said flange means against said transducer for restraining said applicator and said transducer in said colinear position,
an inverted U-shaped extension integral with said head means extending in spaced relation over the said front end portion of said applicator,
said extension having a water passage therethrough with the inlet thereof in mating relation with said passage in said collar and the said outlet of said passage in said handle positioned to project water over said offset tip when pressurized water is supplied by said conduit,
a source of pressurized water,
said opposite end of conduit connected to said source of water for conducting the latter through said device and over said offset tip when said device is operated,
a source of electric oscillating energy,
a pair of electric conductors connecting said transducer with said source of energy whereby said tip will oscillate at a predetermined ultrasonic frequency in contact with a flow of water for cleaning teeth.
4. The construction recited in claim 3 wherein said collar has a circular recess in each side thereof coaxial with the axis of said collar and positioned in adjacent relation including a plurality of spaced holes through said collar connecting each opposite said recess whereby water will flow from the outlet of said bore along said handle into the rear said recess and through at least one of said holes through said collar into the front recess and then into the inlet of said extension of said head when the latter is radially misaligned from said handle through a predetermined angle with respect to the normal central radial alignment with said handle.
5. The construction recited in claim 3 wherein an interchangeable toothbrush-type applicator and an interchangeable head means are substituted in said device for abradingtype applicator and its corresponding head means respectivey,
said brush-type applicator having an outer offset terminating in a toothbrush with bristles extending from one side thereof including a passage through said offset of said interchangeable head means for conducting water from said head and applicator to saidbristles for brushing the teeth when said bristles are ultrasonically oscillated when said device is operated.