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Title:
TOOTH WHITENING SYSTEM
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2016/067123
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
Tooth whitening system comprising: - a toothbrush (1) with a body (2) surmounted with a head (3) with bristles (301) for brushing the tooth surface, at least one reservoir (201) containing a compound comprising at least one whitening agent, means, inside or outside said body, for conveying said compound from said reservoir (201) to the head (3) and for dispensing the compound at said bristles (301), means for increasing the pressure of the compound inside the reservoir (201) such to dispense said compound at said bristles (301) through said conveying and dispensing means.

Inventors:
LEONARDI, Luigi (via Gian Battista Vico 14, Terni, I-05100, IT)
Application Number:
IB2015/054562
Publication Date:
May 06, 2016
Filing Date:
June 17, 2015
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
MICERIUM SPA (Via G. Marconi 83, Avegno, I-16036, IT)
LEONARDI, Luigi (via Gian Battista Vico 14, Terni, I-05100, IT)
International Classes:
A46B11/00; A61C17/22; A61C19/06
Domestic Patent References:
WO2002041802A12002-05-30
WO2007008908A12007-01-18
WO2011094587A12011-08-04
WO1998055001A11998-12-10
Foreign References:
DE4240624A11994-05-11
DE202011002334U12011-04-28
Other References:
None
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
KARAGHIOSOFF, Giorgio (Via F. Baracca 1R, Savona, I-17100, IT)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. Tooth whitening system comprising:

a compound comprising at least one whitening agent,

- a toothbrush (1) with a body (2) surmounted with a head (3) with bristles (301) for brushing the tooth surface ,

at least one reservoir (201) containing said compound comprising at least one whitening agent,

means, inside or outside said body, for conveying said compound from said reservoir (201) to the head (3) and for dispensing the compound at said bristles (301) ,

- means for increasing the pressure of the compound inside the reservoir (201) such to dispense said compound at said bristles (301) through said conveying and dispensing means .

2. Tooth whitening system according to claim 1 , characterized in that the body (2) of the toothbrush

(1) comprises an upper portion or head portion (202) that bears the head (3) with the bristles (301) , and a lower portion or handle portion (203) provided with said at least one reservoir (201) .

3. Tooth whitening system according to claim 2, characterized in that said head portion (202) is provided with a threading connection (212) , snap-on fitting means or the like, connectable with a corresponding seat with a through opening (213) provided at one end of said handle portion (203) .

4. Tooth whitening system according to claim 2 , characterized in that the head portion (202) is made as one piece with the handle portion (203) .

5. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that the conveying and dispensing means that allow the compound, containing at least one whitening agent, to pass from said at least one reservoir (201) to the head (3) provided with the bristles (301) of the toothbrush (1) comprise at least one duct (222) obtained within the thickness of the upper or head portion (202) of the toothbrush (1) , said head portion (202) being made at least partially hollow, which duct (222) is connected, at the head (3) , with at least one through hole (302) provided on the bristle-holder wall of said head (3) , and by a connection (212) , with the seat of the handle portion (203) provided with the through opening (213) .

6. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that the head (3) holding the bristles (301) has such a size to lay over the tooth surface without touching the gums .

7. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that the head (3) holding the bristles (301) is provided with variable-length bristles (301) , the bristles (301) provided on the edges of the head being shorter than the bristles (301) provided in the center of the head (3) .

8. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims, characterized in that said lower portion or handle portion (203) of the toothbrush (1) is at least partially hollow and the walls of said hollow portion delimit a reservoir (201) inside which the compound containing at least one whitening agent or a cartridge, a tube or the like containing said compound is inserted.

9. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that it comprises a cartridge, a tube or the like, with one end connectable to the seat with the through opening (213) provided at one end of said handle portion (203) to allow said reservoir (201) to be filled when said upper or head portion (202) is separated from said lower or handle portion (203) , and/or a cartridge, a tube or the like, with one end connectable to the connection (212) of said head portion (202) .

10. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that it comprises a cartridge, a tube or the like insertable within said reservoir (201) and connectable to the seat with the through opening (213) provided at one end of said handle portion (203) such that by exerting a pressure on the cartridge or on the tube contained into said reservoir (201) the product is dispensed through the duct (222) , towards at least one hole (302) in the head (3) holding the bristles (301) when the upper or head portion (202) of the toothbrush (1) and the lower or handle portion (203) are connected with each other.

11. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims, characterized in that it comprises a cartridge, a tube or the like insertable within said reservoir (201) and means for breaking said cartridge, tube or the like, provided into said reservoir (201) , such that, by exerting a pressure on the cartridge or on the tube the product is dispensed through the seat with the through opening (213) , provided at one end of said handle portion (203) , and the duct (222) provided in said head portion (202) , towards said at least one hole (302) in the head (3) holding the bristles (301) when the upper or head portion (202) of the toothbrush (1) and the lower or handle portion (203) are connected with each other.

12. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that the end of the handle portion (203) opposite to the end connected or connectable to the upper head portion (202) is provided with a removable plug (214) for tightly closing the reservoir (201) .

13. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims, characterized in that at least a part of the walls of the handle portion (203) of the toothbrush (1) delimiting the reservoir (201) , are made of an elastically yielding material, such as rubber or soft plastic material, such that, by exerting a given pressure on said walls, the compound contained in the reservoir (201) is compressed and it is dispensed at the bristles (301) through the hole or holes (302) provided on the head (3) .

14. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims, characterized in that at least one part of the handle portion (203) is made like a syringe with a hollow cylindrical body delimiting a reservoir (201) that contains the whitening compound and a piston (215) that allows said compound to be pushed, through the seat with the through opening (213) , inside said at least one duct (222) provided in said head portion (202) of the toothbrush (1) when the upper or head portion (202) of the toothbrush (1) and the lower or handle portion (203) are connected with each other.

15. Tooth whitening system according to claim 14, characterized in that said piston (215) is provided with a sequence of annular radial extensions (225) intended to engage corresponding seats of the inner shell wall of the reservoir (201) , or vice versa such that said piston (215) is pushed into the reservoir (201) of the handle portion (203) in a progressive snap-on manner .

16. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims, characterized in that at least one part of the handle (203) is made as a hollow cylinder that acts as the reservoir (201) for the whitening compound, with one end provided with a seat with a through opening (213) connected or connectable to the head portion (202) of the toothbrush (1) by a connection (212) and a closed end, a piston (216) , with the head (226) facing said seat (213) being provided inside said hollow cylinder, which piston (216) is movable from a position abutting against the edge of said seat (213) to a position moving away from said seat by means of an outer operating ring nut (217) that forms a portion of the shell wall of said handle portion (203) such that the user, by rotating the ring nut (217) in one or the other direction, operates, by acting on the rod (236) of said piston (216) , by a cam mechanism or the like, the sliding of the piston (216) in an axial longitudinal direction inside said hollow cylindrical portion or reservoir (201) , compressing the contents of said reservoir (201) .

17. Tooth whitening system according to claim 16, characterized in that inside said reservoir (201) there is provided a diaphragm (218) made as a disk with a diameter substantially corresponding to the inner diameter of the reservoir (201) , said diaphragm (218) being slidable along the longitudinal axis with its shell walls tightly contacting the inner shell walls of the reservoir (201) and said diaphragm (218) being interposed between the compound and piston head (226) such to prevent said compound and the pressure increasing means from being directly in contact to allow the whitening compound to be dispensed from the reservoir (201) .

18. Tooth whitening system according to claim 16 or 17, characterized in that the outer operating ring nut (217) is rotatable at least in one direction, in a snap-on manner such that at each snap action the piston (216) moves along the longitudinal axis of said reservoir (201) for a specific portion of such an extent to allow a predetermined amount of the product to be dispensed.

19. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims 16 to 18, characterized in that on the outer shell surface of the reservoir portion (201) there is provided a sequence of notches (219) arranged on a circumference near the edge of the ring nut (217) and projecting in a radial direction, which notches (219) by cooperating with a radial notch or the like, provided on the operating ring nut (217) , allow said piston (216) to move with discrete steps into said reservoir (201) .

20. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims 16 to 19, characterized in that on the outer shell surface of the handle portion (203) , near the operating ring nut (217) of the piston (216) there are provided marks, such as arrows or the like and/or words, that indicate the moving direction of the piston (216) inside the reservoir (201) .

21. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that the walls of the handle portion (203) and/or of the head portion (202) of the toothbrush (1) are made as transparent such to allow the user to verify the amount of compound inside the toothbrush (1) , particularly inside the reservoir (201) .

22. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that the compound comprises hydrogen peroxide and/or carbamide peroxide as the whitening agent.

23. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims, characterized in that the hydrogen peroxide is provided in a concentration within the range 0.5-10% by weight of the compound.

24. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that the carbamide peroxide is provided in a concentration within the range 0.5-20% by weight of the compound.

25. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that the hydrogen peroxide is in a concentration ranging from 0.5 to 6% by weight of the compound.

26. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that the carbamide peroxide is in a concentration ranging from 0.5 to 16% by weight of the compound.

27. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in that said toothbrush (1) is electric with a rotating, vibrating and/or oscillating head (3) , such to promote the mechanical action of the bristles (301) in addition to the manual action of the user.

28. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims , characterized in said toothbrush (1) is an electric ultrasonic toothbrush.

29. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims, characterized in that said toothbrush (1) is provided with a cover (4) for protecting the bristles (301) and/or for tightly closing the head and/or the hole or holes (302) .

30. Tooth whitening system according to one or more of the preceding claims, characterized in that each toothbrush (1) and/or each cartridge contains an amount of the whitening compound such to carry out one treatment cycle that allows the tooth surface to be whitened by at least two chromaticity levels of VITA® scale.

31. Tooth whitening kit comprising:

- at least one toothbrush (1) according to one or more of the preceding claims 1 to 30 with a reservoir 301 filled or fillable with a compound comprising at least one whitening agent,

- at least one refill such as a cartridge, a tube or the like containing said compound comprising at least one whitening agent.

32. Kit according to claim 31 characterized in that it comprises at least one upper or head portion

(202) of the toothbrush (1) and one or more non- refillable lower or handle portions (203) , each one containing a specific amount of the whitening compound, each handle portion (203) performing the refill function.

Description:
TOOTH WHITENING SYSTEM

The present invention relates to a tooth whitening system.

It is known that having whiter teeth is one of the wishes of human beings .

Teeth generally become darker with age and due to the exposure to food or substances, such as coffee, tea or tobacco .

The known treatment methods for whitening the teeth provide to remove pigments from the surface of teeth by using abrasive agents and/or solvents or they provide to use oxidizing agents that penetrate into the tooth structure and remove the undesired pigments . Generally the employed agents are solutions of hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide .

The use of abrasive agents is a method that allows teeth to be whitened quickly but it has the heavy drawback of damaging the surface of teeth and of having a time-limited effect.

On the contrary the use of oxidizing agents is more effective but it requires a treatment extended over time for obtaining a suitable penetration of the chemical agent into the tooth structure. Currently the methods for applying whitening agents provide to use pen-like devices with a brush tip that allows a whitening gel to be applied on the tooth surface or kits comprising syringes of hydrogen peroxide in different percentages , thermolabile sheets for making tooth masks that follow the shape of the dental arch and that allow the whitening agent to remain in contact against the surface of the teeth to be treated: the masks filled with a compound having a high-viscosity and low soluble in saliva have to be applied on the user teeth for a variable time period, from one to many hours up to 6/8 hours, for all the night.

After a series of treatments the user can obtain more or less the desired whitening effect.

This obviously leads to several drawbacks : the oxidizing agent can make teeth sensitive, it can irritate the mouth mucosas with which it comes in contact, for example tongue and gums, it can be unintentionally swallowed with clear undesired effects . Moreover the use of the masks is not comfortable for the user and it is aesthetically unpleasant.

Moreover this type of treatment is a passive process simply based on the contact between agent and surface of the tooth namely the active oxygen has to penetrate by contact through the enamel prisms and the dentinal tubules in order to carry out the desired effect: obviously the chemical activity of the compound decreases over time, with a consequent reduction in the effectiveness .

Moreover the treatment is very expensive as a whole .

The object of the present invention is to provide a tooth whitening system that is rapid, cheap, easy to use, comfortable, space-saving, easy to be transported, very healthy and effective for treating the tooth surface .

These advantages are achieved by a system according to the characteristics of the first claim.

The system of the present invention allows an improvement in the colour of teeth to be obtained without using masks and/or high-viscosity compounds and it can be used during or after the usual treatment for washing the teeth.

The system of the present invention further is more comfortable to use with respect to known devices whitening the tooth surface and it is easy to be transported such that the user can use it in any moment and anywhere.

Particularly the system of the present invention allows the whitening agent or agents to act on the teeth in order to obtain the improvement in the color not only by the contact between chemical agent and tooth, but above all by an active mechanical action exerting an action pushing the whitening agent, allowing it to be more concentrated within the tooth seats of interest, allowing the agent or agents to act on and into the tooth surface, making the treatment more rapid and effective.

By means of the present tooth whitening system the treatment of teeth can be less invasive for the soft tissues of the mouth and it can be carried out in a shorter time but in a more constant manner over time, therefore preventing pigments from accumulating on the tooth with a consequent increase in the treatment effectiveness for the user.

Moreover thanks to the reduction in the time of exposure between whitening agent and tooth surface, the user is willing to use the system also every day, without having interferences with the usual everyday activities and with no interferences in interpersonal relationships , interferences that occur for example when the conventional whitening masks have to be worn all the night long.

These advantages are obtained by a toothbrush provided with means for dispensing a compound, containing at least one whitening agent, at the bristles , which bristles allow the surface of teeth to be mechanically treated with the whitening agent during the application. Moreover the toothbrush is provided with a reservoir containing said compound and it is able to dispense it at the bristles during the application itself, such that the mechanical action of the bristles on the teeth facilitates the penetration of the whitening agent.

These and other characteristics and advantages of the present invention will be more clear from the following description of some embodiments shown in the annexed drawings wherein:

Fig.l is the toothbrush of the present invention:

Figs . 2a and b are the head and handle portions of the toothbrush in a perspective view,

Figs . 3a and b are the head and handle portions of the toothbrush in a front view, Fig. 4 is one embodiment of the toothbrush,

Fig. 5 is one embodiment of the toothbrush,

Fig. 6 is one embodiment of the toothbrush,

Fig. 7 is one embodiment of the toothbrush.

According to the present invention the tooth whitening system comprises a compound comprising at least one whitening agent, a toothbrush 1 with a body 2 surmounted with a head 3 with bristles 301 for brushing the tooth surface, at least one reservoir 201 containing said compound comprising at least one whitening agent, means, inside or outside said body, for conveying said compound from said reservoir 201 to the head 3 and for dispensing the compound at said bristles 301 and means for increasing the pressure of the compound inside the reservoir 201 such to dispense said compound at said bristles 301 through said conveying and dispensing means .

Such as shown in figure 1, the body 2 of the toothbrush 1 comprises two parts : an upper portion or head portion 202 that bears the head 3 with the bristles 301, and a lower portion or handle portion 203 provided with said at least one reservoir 201.

Preferably the upper portion or head portion 202 is thin and elongated, intended to be inserted within the mouth for treating the whole dental arch, while the lower portion or handle portion 203 is intended to be grasped by the user .

Said head portion 202 is connectable to said handle portion 203 by a threaded connection 212 intended to be screwed into a corresponding seat with a through opening 213 provided with said handle portion 203 at one end.

The connection of the head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1 with the handle portion 203 can occur by any means, for example by snap-on fitting means or the like.

The fact of making the toothbrush 1 with two parts separated and connectable with each other facilitates cleansing and sanitizing operations .

Obviously it is possible to provide the head portion 202 to be made as one piece with the handle portion 203.

The conveying and dispensing means that allow the compound, containing at least one whitening agent, to pass from said at least one reservoir 201 to the head 3 provided with the bristles 301 of the toothbrush 1 comprise at least one hollow duct 222 obtained within the thickness of the upper or head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1, which duct 222 is connected, at the head 3, with at least one through hole 302 provided on the bristle-holder wall of said head 3 , and by the connection 212, with the seat of the handle portion 203 provided with the through opening.

Such as shown in figure 2a and 4 the head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1 is made as hollow and the head 3 has one or more holes 302 such that, when the head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1 is screwed or connected to the handle portion 203, the compound contained within the reservoir 201, due to a pressing action exerted on said compound, can pass inside the hollow body of the head portion 202 and it can be dispensed through the holes 302 provided on the head 3: thus the user when brushing his/her teeth facilitates the penetration of the whitening agent into the tooth surface.

It is possible to provide the head 3 holding the bristles 301 to have such a size to lay over the tooth surface without touching the gums such to limit the contact of the whitening agent with the soft and more delicate parts of the mouth.

Obviously it is possible to provide a head 3 with any shape .

According to one embodiment the head 3 is provided with variable-length bristles , particularly the bristles 301 provided on the edges are shorter than the bristles 301 provided in the center of the head 3 such to prevent gums from being irritated.

Such as shown in figure 2b, 6, 7 the lower portion or handle portion 203 of the toothbrush 1 is also at least partially hollow and the walls of said hollow portion delimit a reservoir 201 inside which it is possible to insert the compound containing at least one whitening agent or a cartridge, a tube or the like containing said compound.

According to one embodiment said compound can be stored into a cartridge, a tube or the like, which cartridge or tube have one end with an opening through which the product can be discharged, which end is connectable, for example by fitting or screwing it, to the seat with the through opening 213 provided at one end of said handle portion 203: thus, by separating the upper or head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1 from the lower or handle portion 203 the user can proceed with filling the reservoir with the contents of the cartridge or tube .

As an alternative it is possible to provide said cartridge or tube to be insertable within the reservoir and connectable from the inside of said handle portion, for example by fitting or screwing it, to the seat with the through opening 213 provided at one end of said handle portion 203: thus by exerting a pressure on the cartridge or on the tube the product is dispensed through the duct 222 , towards one or more holes provided on the head 3 holding the bristles 301 when the upper or head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1 and the lower or handle portion 203 are connected with each other .

It is possible to provide the end of the handle portion 203 opposite to the end connected or connectable to the upper head portion 202 to be provided with a plug 214 for tightly closing the reservoir 201, such shown in figure 4 or 5: this removable plug 214 allows the reservoir 201 to be refilled, particularly for the embodiment providing the head portion 202 to be made as one piece with the handle portion 203, or the refill to be inserted like a cartridge or tube .

In order to allow the toothbrush 1 to be used and the compound to exert the whitening action on the tooth surface it is necessary for said compound to be dispensed from the hole or holes 302 provided on the head 3 holding the bristles 301: therefore it is necessary to increase the pressure on the compound into the reservoir such to make it more easy to be dispensed.

According to one embodiment, such as shown in figure 4 and 5, at least a part of the walls of the handle portion 203 of the toothbrush 1 delimiting the reservoir 201, are made of an elastically yielding material, for example rubber or soft plastic material, such that, by exerting a given pressure on said walls, the compound contained in the reservoir 201 is compressed and it is dispensed at the bristles 301 through the hole or holes 302 provided on the head 3, while impregnating the bristles 301 and allowing the contact between the whitening agent and the tooth surface, with the penetration of the compound into the tooth structure by means of the mechanical brushing action .

According to a further embodiment, such as shown in figure 6, at least one part of the handle portion 203 is made like a syringe with a hollow cylindrical body delimiting a reservoir 201 that contains the whitening compound and a piston 215 that allows said compound to be pushed, through the opening connecting with the hollow head portion 202, into said at least one duct 222 provided in said head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1.

Such as shown in figure 6 it is possible to provide on said piston 215 a sequence of annular radial extensions 225 intended to engage corresponding seats of the inner shell wall of the reservoir 201, or vice versa: said extensions 225 are spaced from each other such that the user can push the piston 215 inside the hollow body or reservoir 201 of the handle portion 203 in a progressive snap-on manner, allowing at each snap action a predetermined amount of the compound to pass, through the duct 222 of the head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1 , and to be dispensed from the hole or holes 302 on the head 3.

It is possible to provide at least a part of said lower or handle portion 203 to be hollow and that inside said cavity, whose walls delimit the reservoir 201, a cartridge or tube can be insertable containing the whitening compound and that there are provided means for perforating said cartridge such that the compound can be discharged from the cartridge and can flow towards the bristles 301 by the action of means provided for increasing the pressure on said compound. For example it is possible to provide the walls of the handle portion 203 containing the cartridge to be at least partially elastic for pushing the compound from the cartridge to the bristles 301 through the duct provided in the upper or head portion 202 or the compound to be pushed by the action of a piston slidable into said hollow handle portion and insertable into its end opposite to the end for the connection to the head portion 202.

According to a further embodiment such as shown in figures 1 and 7 at least one handle portion 203 is made like a hollow cylinder that acts as a reservoir 201 for the whitening compound, with one end provided with a seat with a through opening 213 connected or connectable to the head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1 and a closed end, a piston 216, with the head 226 facing said seat 213 being provided inside said hollow cylinder, which piston 216 is movable from a position abutting against the edge of said seat 213 to a position moving away from said seat by means of an outer operating ring nut 217 that forms a portion of the shell wall of said handle portion 203: the user, by rotating the ring nut 217 in one direction or the other direction, operates, by acting on the rod 236 of said piston 216, by a cam mechanism or the like, the sliding of the piston 216 in an axial longitudinal direction inside said hollow cylindrical portion. The reservoir 201 containing the whitening compound therefore is delimited by the inner shell walls of the hollow cylindrical portion and by the head 226 of said piston 216.

Such as shown in figure 7 it is possible to provide inside said reservoir 201 a diaphragm 218 made as a disk with a diameter substantially corresponding to the inner diameter of the reservoir 201: said diaphragm 218 slides along the longitudinal axis with its shell walls tightly contacting the inner shell walls of the reservoir 201. Said disk-like diaphragm 218 forms the base of said reservoir 201 and since it is interposed between the compound and the head of the piston 226 it prevents said compound and the pressure increasing means from being directly in contact such to allow the whitening compound to be dispensed.

Said diaphragm 218 can be bound to, for example by being glued, or not bound to the head 226 of the piston 216: in this latter case therefore it slides towards the seat with the through opening 213 of the handle portion 203 pushed by the head 226 of the piston 216 that is moved by the action of the outer ring nut 217 by the user and in an opposite direction, when the piston 216 is in a position moved away from said seat 213, due to the pressing action of the whitening compound that is inserted into the reservoir 201, when filling said reservoir 201, through the opening provided in the seat 213 of the lower or handle portion 203, when the upper or head portion 201 of the toothbrush 1 is disconnected.

According to one embodiment the outer operating ring nut 217 is rotatable at least in one direction, particularly in the direction moving the head 226 of the piston 216 near the seat with the through opening 213 that allows the compound to be dispensed by the action of said piston 216 on the contents of said reservoir 201, in a snap-on manner such that at each snap action the piston 216 moves along the longitudinal axis for a specific portion with such an extent to allow a predetermined amount of the product to be dispensed.

As an alternative or in combination, on the outer shell surface of the reservoir portion 201, it is possible to provide a sequence of notches 219 arranged on a circumference near the edge of the ring nut 217 and projecting in a radial direction, which notches 219 by cooperating with a radial notch or the like, provided on the operating ring nut 217, allow said piston 216 to move with discrete steps into said reservoir 201.

It is possible to provide on the outer shell surface of the handle portion 203, near the operating ring nut 217 of the piston 216, marks, such as arrows or the like and/or words, that indicate the moving direction of the piston 216 inside the reservoir 201.

According to one embodiment the walls of the handle portion 203 and/or of the head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1 are made as transparent such to allow the user to verify the amount of compound inside the toothbrush, particularly inside the reservoir 201.

The system of the present invention comprises a compound comprising at least one whitening agent.

It is possible to use hydrogen peroxide and/or carbamide peroxide as the whitening agent.

The hydrogen peroxide may be provided in a concentration within the range 0.5-10% by weight of the compound.

The carbamide peroxide may be provided in a concentration within the range 0.5-20% by weight of the compound.

According to one embodiment the hydrogen peroxide is in a concentration ranging from 0.5 to 6% by weight of the compound.

According to one embodiment the carbamide peroxide is in a concentration ranging from 0.5 to 16% by weight of the compound.

Preferably said compound is contained within a reservoir 201 placed near a head 3 holding the bristles 301 for facilitating the release of the compound on the tooth surface when brushing.

The brushing action allows the tooth surface to be cleaned and the plaque and other elements to be removed which can interfere, by creating a physical barrier, with the action of the whitening agent.

The bristles 301 of the toothbrush 1 allow the whitening compound, with which said bristles 301 are impregnated, to act on and inside the surface layer of the teeth .

The mechanical brushing action allows the compound to be distributed on all the surface of teeth, it allows the spaces between teeth to be reached, the front and back surface of the tooth to be reached, it facilitates the penetration in the tooth surface layer and it allows the compound to be continuously distributed, removed and distributed again, guaranteeing the tooth to be always in contact with fresh compound, completely active, coming from the reservoir 201 that therefore allows the reactivity of the whitening agent with the tooth surface to enhance, preventing the compound from being stagnant as in conventional methods using masks .

Moreover the use of said toothbrush 1 allows the whitening action performed by the user to be carried out both during and after the usual action washing the teeth .

A daily treatment of few minutes (from 1 to 5 minutes) , preferably 2 or 3 minutes, can replace two or three hours of whitening treatment according to the conventional mask methods carried out every 3-6 months in the dentist' s surgery or 1 to 8 hour treatments to be carried out for 14-20 days: the treatment taking few minutes and extended over time makes the treatment more comfortable to be performed and it prevents pigments from accumulating on the tooth surface making the whitening effect more easy to be obtained and maintained.

According to a further embodiment it is possible to provide said toothbrush 1 to be electric with a rotating, vibrating and/or oscillating head 3, such to promote the mechanical action of the bristles 301 in addition to the manual action of the user .

The toothbrush 1 can be an electric ultrasonic toothbrush . The vibrations of the toothbrush 1 , particularly of the head 3 holding the bristles 301, help in enhancing the whitening action of the compound, since they generate microbubbles inside the compound itself . The microbubbles allow the whitening agent to enter more easily in the spaces between the teeth, enhancing the whitening effect.

Such as shown in the figures the toothbrush 1 of the present invention can be provided with a cover 4 for protecting the bristles 301 and/or for tightly closing the head and/or the hole or holes 302, which cover allows the system to be transportable and -therefore usable by the user in any moment. According to one embodiment said cover is screwable on the handle portion 203 by means of a screw thread 402.

The present invention relates also to a tooth whitening kit comprising:

at least one toothbrush 1 such as described above with a reservoir 201 filled or fillable with a compound comprising at least one whitening agent,

- at least one refill such as a cartridge, a tube or the like containing said compound comprising at least one whitening agent.

According to a variant of the present invention it is possible to provide the kit to comprise at least one upper or head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1 and one or more non-refillable lower or handle portions 203, each one containing a specific amount of the whitening compound.

Thus each handle portion 203 performs the refill function .

As described above said tube or cartridge is connectable to the connection 212 of the upper or head portion 202 of the toothbrush 1, for example by screwing or snap-fitting it, such to allow the whitening compound to directly pass from the refill to the head 3 or it can be used for refilling the reservoir 201.

According to one embodiment each toothbrush 1 and/or each cartridge contains an amount of whitening compound such to carry out one treatment cycle .

Said treatment cycle may allow the tooth surface to be whitened by at least two chromaticity levels of VITA® scale.

Said at least one reservoir 201 or refill therefore may have a volume equal to the compound volume necessary for one treatment cycle.

The invention is not limited to the embodiments described above but variants and/or changes may be made to the device without departing from the inventive concept as described and claimed.