New gadget sounds death-knell for ominous whine of the dentist's drill

Posted By: Manoj Kumar Ramesh
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Washington, Jan 10 (ANI): For many, the sound of the dental drill is a big cause of anxiety when it comes to visiting a dentist. But now, they might benefit from a new invention that cancels out the drill's whine.

Scientists at London universities have developed a gadget that allows patients to hear their favourite music on an MP3 player and the voice of their dentist, while the unpleasant sound of the drill and suction equipment is completely blocked out.

The device is similar to noise-cancelling headphones but is designed to deal with the drill's high-pitched sound.

Patients simply have to plug the device into their mobile phone or MP3 player and plug their headphones into the device to get rid of the noise.

The device contains a chip that analyses the incoming sound with the help of a microphone placed close to the drill and produces an inverted sound wave to cancel out unwanted noise.

It also uses 'adaptive filtering' technology, where electronic filters lock onto sound waves and remove them, even if the wave's amplitude and frequency change as the drill is being used.

Developed by experts at King's College London, Brunel University and London South Bank University, it was originally the idea of Professor Brian Millar of King's Dental Institute.

"Many people put off going to the dentist because of anxiety associated with the noise of the dentist's drill. But this device has the potential to make fear of the drill a thing of the past," said Millar.

"It would be fairly cost-effective for dentists to buy, and any patient with an MP3 player would be able to benefit from it, at no extra cost," he added. (ANI)

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