Here's a story in a similar vein - an article from Arab News commending the use of sticks for cleaning your teeth:
RIYADH: Using miswak, the twig used by a majority of people in Muslim countries to brush their teeth, is alien to most people in the West. Although it might sound outdated to use twigs from different trees to clean one’s mouth and teeth, studies conducted on miswak have proved otherwise, inferring that the miswak is better than toothpaste for preventing mouth and dental diseases.I don't know if Mo ever mentioned teeth cleaning, but the religion has specific views on all sort of hygiene matters, so who knows. Mind you, they were ahead of the trend when it comes to hair shaving in regions Westerners never used to worry about.
The miswak, referred to at times as a chewing stick, is also an alternative form of medicine, according to some research findings. The twig’s usage has been highly recommended in Islam, and Muslims across the world practice it. In Saudi Arabia, the use of sticks or twigs from the Salvadora persica trees, known as arak in Arabic, are common....
According to research conducted by the Riyadh-based King Saud University (KSU), a total of 19 natural substances were found in miswak that benefit dental health. According to research, the miswak contains a number of natural antiseptics that kill harmful micro-organisms in the mouth, tannic acids that protect gums from disease, and aromatic oils that increase salivation.