The history of the toothbrush is quite an interesting one. Even before there were records to denote when and how toothbrushes were used, people were using them in one capacity or another. Some did it to get the food out of the crevasses between their teeth. Others did it to improve their breath. But all had a very common goal, and that goal was to improve their oral care, whether they knew it or not.
The history of the toothbrush dates back as far as 1600 BC in Africa, when toothbrushes were found in multiple archeological digs. These toothbrushes of course did not have the bristles on them that currently are in use today. Mostly, they were made of strong bristled animal hair, like hair from horses and other animals that had coarse fur. The ancient Chinese used them too, both with horse tail hair and with handles that were made from the bones of other animals. And in their travels, the Chinese brought this oral care piece of equipment to Europe, which had never thought of such a thing.
The history of the toothbrush jumps around in time to the mid 1800s, when the world’s first official patent was granted to make toothbrushes. Mass production on these toothbrushes did not begin until several decades later, when the masses began to realize the purpose behind toothbrushes and the benefits of their use. This in effect helped to dramatically change the course of toothbrush history. Still, the history of toothbrush tools used would indicate that eventually there would be a need for something other than animal hair to clean teeth and keep them in good condition.
In the 20th century, nylon bristles were introduced, thereby bringing the history of the toothbrush to a completely different level. Around World War II, when American soldiers were required to brush their teeth daily, regular people also began using these nylon bristled brushes to clean their own teeth. These soldiers, whether they meant to or not, helped to bring about real change in America during this time, since before then toothbrushes were not used regularly by most people. Today, the history of the toothbrush sounds silly to some because they cannot possibly imagine what their breath and their teeth would be like if they did not brush every day. But a visit to a teeth wiki site does produce some interesting facts on the history of the toothbrush and its changing uses over time.