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Oral sensor sends tooth data to dentist

Dentists will know what you did last night, according to a new oral sensor device

Researchers at the National Taiwan University have created a mouth sensor which tracks how well you are looking after your teeth, and reports your bad habits straight to the dentist.

The new sensor has been created by a team of researchers at the National Taiwan University's Department of Science and Information Engineering and Department of Electrical Engineering. The mouth sensor fits into your mouth and can recognise human oral activities, such as eating, drinking, speaking and coughing, with a high accuracy level of 93.8%.

This information can then be sent to the dentist using a wired connection (Wi-Fi) to send and retrieve data. Researchers are working on producing a tiny battery to power the sensor, and a Bluetooth receiver to transmit the data wirelessly to a nearby smartphone.

The device has been tested on eight participants and is found to be too big to be fitted to an existing tooth. An artificial tooth, likely to replace an existing tooth and coated with dental resin for safety, is the safest way to install the device.

The study found that, as people's teeth and mouth structure are different, so too are the sensor placements, resulting in variations in the motion data. To improve the accuracy of the device, the study notes: 'It is possible to improve the accuracy of person-independent classification by extending the training set to include different sensor placements and oral activity types.'

The study results have been published online as PDF: 'Sensor-Embedded Teeth for Oral Activity Recognition'.

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