Kronberg, Germany, 12 April 2012 –– Oral-B is relentlessly looking to improve their products, they rely on many internal experts and also bring in the knowledge of external specialists from dental science and practice, in order to come with the best solutions to consumers and professionals needs. In March of this year, Oral-B again invited such experts to the two-day "Power for Oral Health Symposium 2012", at the Procter & Gamble Global Innovation Center at Kronberg and the Oral-B global manufacturing center at Marktheidenfeld, both located in Germany. Oral-B exchanged insights and expertise with fourty-five experts in Preventive Dentistry, Periodontology and Public Health – mainly university professors, but also some dentists and dental hygienists from all over Europe. The group was also exposed to the latest innovations and was asked for opinions and how these innovations could improve the lives of their patients. They learned about TriZone, a new to the world break through innovation in power brushing aimed at helping people with a strong manual brushing affinity.
It is a long road from the first design of a toothbrush to final mass production. Product development at Oral-B follows a holistic approach and is based on three pillars: First, understanding consumer and professional needs and habits, second, laboratory studies, and third, clinical studies. In the various steps during the development of a new power toothbrush, studies are conducted with consumers, in the laboratory (for example robot testing) and via in vivo research, such as descriptive sensory analysis and clinical studies. Plaque removal is a mechanical process and robot tests are used to investigate the cleaning performance of toothbrushes under standardized conditions. The Robot Test methodology has been clinically validated and the results obtained in the in-vitro robot test are in good agreement with the results of later conducted in-vivo clinical studies1. Oral-B has a legacy of developing high performance toothbrushes and conducting extensive clinical research. With their power toothbrushes and brush heads, Oral-B has conducted more than 125 clinical studies (ranging from 1 week to 33 months) and has found them to be both safe and efficacious. This has been also confirmed by the recognized Cochrane Collaboration meta-analyses2 which quoted: “Rotation-oscillation powered toothbrushes remove plaque and reduced gingivitis more than manual brushes in the short and long term.”
Participants also learnt about descriptive sensory analysis, so how products are investigated in terms of their sensory characteristics, either in mouth or handling (haptic) characteristics. This is important as sensory characteristics, ergonomics, and the overall design also contribute significantly to the acceptance of a product in the patient’s everyday life.
Moving from the Taunus region to Marktheidenfeld the next day, a visit to the local high-tech production plant for Oral-B power toothbrushes rounded off the program. Specializing in mass production of power oral care products, the factory is now one of the most important locations within the group: 140.000 products are manufactured daily at this German plant on fully automated production line for the entire world.
The “Power for Oral Health Symposium 2012” allowed a strong scientific exchange between Oral-B’s experts and external specialists from dental science and practice. Both groups will highly benefit from these insights during their daily work and it will help Oral-B to further improve their products in order to come with the best oral care solutions to consumers and professionals needs.
This international group of experts was also exposed to the latest innovations and was asked for opinions and how these innovations could improve the lives of their patients. They learned about TriZone, a new to the world break through innovation in power brushing for people with a strong manual brushing affinity. The new TriZone features a manual-like brush head and gives patients the opportunity to have a manual brushing experience while benefitting from the 3D electric brushing power and so therefore achieving better cleaning results.