Healthy Tech Round-up: 3 simple ways tech is improving health

In this week's edition of Healthy Tech, we look at toothbrush technology, a peripheral that will let your iPhone examine your inner ear for ear infections and apps that can help you monitor (and hopefully lessen) your acne in a way that uses no snake oil, but innovation instead.

1. Two New Toothbrushes That Aim to Change The Way You Brush

Toothbrush technology isn't probably something you think about regularly.

Sure, we've got tons of automatic ones these days and manufacturers are constantly saying they've found some way to innovate — but since a lot of dentists still give out non-automatic ones, perhaps a toothbrush is a toothbrush is a toothbrush.

On the other hand, there's a lot of companies out there that are trying some interesting ideas. Here's my two favorites.

One is the Rinser Brush from Amron-Oral, which we covered here on DVICE recently. It eliminates the need for you to keep a cup of rinse water nearby. Instead, collect some water in a little scoop built into the brush and then squirt it out of a hole in the handle into your mouth to rinse properly.

In addition, the Rinser Brush has replaceable bristles, like a lot of modern automatic brushes — eliminating the need to toss out the entire brush when the bristles are getting crusty. It's available for pre-order and comes out in November.

I've also been pretty interested in something called the Beam Brush recently — unfortunately like Rinser Brush, it's not available for sale yet but it should be out in late summer.

Beam Brush has Bluetooth and connects wirelessly to an app on your phone to collect data about how you're brushing. Track yourself, or even better — your kids — to see how long they're really brushing for sure. And where in their mouth.

Me? I plan to use to use it just to prove to my dentist that "YES Dr. Lucas, I brush twice a day..."


2. Use Your iPhone to Look Inside Your Ears For An Infection

Week to week, I look at apps and devices for iOS and Android devices that help people self-monitor their health. And now a new company, Cellscope, is determined to allow you to make your smartphone so well, smart, that you're going to be like a doctor.

(Okay. Not really.)

Their first product is designed to turn your phone into an otoscope — the device that you use to look into ears with. One of the main reasons kids have to go see their pediatrician is ear infections. Cellscope is hoping with their device, parents can self-diagnose their kids to confirm an infection.

Or at least upload it to a real doctor for them to take a look. The peripheral would allow users to take a magnified picture of the inner ear, upload it to Cellscope and then have their pediatrician examine it remotely — saving time and money.

Celloscope eventually plans to include a dermascope for examining skin problems as well.
No word on when the product will become available, but I imagine it will be a huge hit if and when it hits the market. I know my Mom certainly would have liked it...

Via Hardware Lust

3. Apps That Can Help You Deal with Acne

There's thousands and thousands of apps that let you track your runs and calories consumed for your smartphone. And now... there are some dedicated to your acne.

DVICE recently covered a health app that uses photos of your face to analyze your skin condition and assign a score. It obviously won't cure you, but it can help you track over time how your face is reacting to different treatments you may elect to try. Instead of guessing, you'll now actually have the ability to accurately track how your skin is reacting.

There's also an app from Traxie Labs called diet and acne that will help you discover how your diet is impacting your acne. For instance, it will help you track if you're eating too much chocolate, fiber, sugar, fats, etc. — all things than can make your acne worse. There are of course plenty of diet apps, but this is the first I've seen that's so dedicated to trying to get you to improve your lifestyle, so you hopefully improve your skin.

While we're unfortunately not very close to an app that will allow you to magically wave your acne away by waving your phone all over your face, at least you can monitor it more closely and take the steps to lessen its impact on your life.


About Healthy Tech

This is the Healthy Tech Weekly, where guest columnist Alan Danzis reports on choice healthy technology news stories. Each week you'll discover new fitness gadgets, apps and going-ons, as well as what's around the corner, with medical innovations that will one day change the way you monitor and impact your overall health and well-being.

This feature is interactive: if you have questions for Alan, write us at Feel free to include a personal website or Twitter URL where we can find you at — if we use your question we'll include your link. Please write "Healthy Tech" in your subject line.

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