Title:
Pillow for health
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A health pillow for correcting and protecting cervical vertebrae within the cervical area of a human body is provided ergonomically considering the physical condition of the human body is provided ergonomically considering the physical condition of the human body and the body shape. The health pillow includes a neck portion formed at the center of a body for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward, profile supporting portions formed on the right sides of the neck portion for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion when the user lies on his/her side, and shoulder contacting portions closely contacting the user's shoulders. The shoulder contacting portions allow the ealth pillow to be fixed with respect to the user so that the cervical area can correctly supported on the neck portion. Accordingly, the user can maintain an optinal posture, and the cervical vertebrae can be exactly stretched and corrected. The health pillow also includes a unit for adjusting the position of each portion so that each portion can be properly adjusted to the user's body shape and physical condition. Accordingly, the healt pillow is effective in maintaining an optimal posture for stretching, correcting, and protecting the cervical vertebrae.



Inventors:
Baik, Jae Soo (Suncheon City, KR)
Application Number:
10/362861
Publication Date:
10/02/2003
Filing Date:
02/26/2003
Assignee:
BAIK JAE SOO
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47G9/10; (IPC1-7): A47G9/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
TRETTEL, MICHAEL
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Jae Soo Baik (Linday, CA, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A health pillow comprising a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward; profile supporting portions provided on the left and right sides of the neck portion for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion when the user lies on his/her side; and shoulder contacting portions provided on the front surfaces of the respective profile supporting portions for making the pillow closely contact the user's shoulders.

2. The health pillow of claim 1, further comprising a body including the neck portion, the profile supporting portions, and the shoulder contacting portions, having an empty space therewithin, and having a plurality of pores on its surface allowing air to come into and go out of the pillow.

3. The health pillow of claim 1 or 2, wherein the neck portion comprises extending portions which are curved corresponding to a curve the user's neck and the back of the user's head when viewed from the side, are curved to widely receive the neck when viewed from the front, and extend to the left and back and to the right and back, respectively, when viewed from the above so that the weight of the user's head can be dispersed to thus allow the user's head to be comfortably received in the pillow.

4. The health pillow of claim 1 or 2, wherein the profile supporting portions are concave so that the side of the user's face can be comfortably received therein.

5. The health pillow of claim 1 or 2, wherein the shoulder contacting portions are concave so that the user's shoulders can be partially received therein.

6. The health pillow of claim 1 or 2, further comprising pressing means for locally pressing and stimulating the user's body contacting the surface of the pillow.

7. The health pillow of claim 2, further comprising a space for receiving things therein within the body and a cover for closing or opening the space.

8. A health pillow comprising a body comprising a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward and supports formed on the left and right sides of the neck portion; and profile supporting blocks which are received in the respective left and right supports of the body and comprise profile supporting portions, respectively, for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion when the user lies on his/her side, the heights of the profile supporting portions being adjustable.

9. A health pillow comprising a body comprising a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward and left and right supports formed on the left and right sides of the neck portion; profile supporting blocks which are received in the respective left and right supports of the body and comprise profile supporting portions for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion when the user lies on his/her side and shoulder contacting portions for making the user's shoulders closely contact the pillow, the shoulder contacting portions being formed on the front side of the respective profile supporting blocks; and adjusting means for moving each of the profile supporting blocks up and down and/or back and forth with respect to the body so that at least one of the height of each of the profile supporting portions and the position of each of the shoulder contacting portions can be adjusted.

10. The health pillow of claim 9, wherein the profile supporting blocks are received in the left and right supports of the body to be movable up and down, and the adjusting means comprises a nut fixed to the bottom of each of the profile supporting blocks; and a bolt installed such that the bolt goes inward through the bottom of each of the left and right supports from the outside, is coupled with the nut, and is rotated by external operation, so that the height of each of the profile supporting portions can be adjusted.

11. The health pillow of claim 9, wherein the profile supporting blocks are received in the left and right supports of the body to be movable back and forth, and the adjusting means comprises a nut fixed to the back of each of the profile supporting blocks; and a bolt installed such that the bolt goes inward through the back of each of the left and right supports from the outside, is coupled with the nut, and is rotated by external operation, so that the position of each of the shoulder contacting portions can be adjusted.

12. The health pillow of claim 9, wherein the profile supporting blocks are supported by the left and right supports of the body so that each of the profile supporting blocks can be moved up and down and back and forth, and the adjusting means comprises a vertical aperture formed at the back of each of the left and right supports; a horizontal aperture formed at the bottom of each of the left and right supports, a first nut fixed to the bottom of each of the profile supporting blocks for allowing each of the profile supporting blocks to move up and down; a second nut fixed to the back of each of the profile supporting blocks for allowing each of the profile supporting blocks to move back and forth; a first bolt movably installed at the vertical aperture coupled with the first nut and rotated by external operation; and a second bolt movably installed at the vertical aperture coupled with the second nut and rotated by external operation, so that the height of each of the profile supporting portions and the position of each of the shoulder contacting portions can be adjusted.

13. The health pillow of claim 9, wherein the adjusting means comprises a vertical aperture formed at the back of each of the left and right supports of the body; an auxiliary support member which is supported by each of the left and right supports so that the auxiliary support member can be moved up and down and which supports each of the profile supporting blocks so that each of the profile supporting blocks can be moved back and forth; a first nut fixed to the bottom of the auxiliary support member for allowing the auxiliary support member to move up and down; a second nut fixed to the back of each of the profile supporting blocks for allowing each of the profile supporting blocks to move back and forth; a first bolt installed such that the first bolt goes inward through the bottom of each of the left and right supports from the outside, is coupled with the first nut, and is rotated by external operation; and a second bolt installed such that the second bolt goes inward through the back of the auxiliary support member from the outside, is coupled with the second nut, and is rotated by external operation through the vertical aperture, so that the height of each of the profile supporting portions and the position of each of the shoulder contacting portions can be adjusted.

14. The health pillow of claim 9, wherein the adjusting means comprises a horizontal aperture formed at the bottom of each of the left and right supports of the body; an auxiliary support member which is supported by each of the left and right supports so that the auxiliary support member can be moved back and forth and which supports each of the profile supporting blocks so that each of the profile supporting blocks can be moved up and down; a first nut fixed to the bottom of each of the profile supporting blocks for allowing each of the profile supporting blocks to move up and down; a second nut fixed to the back of the auxiliary support member for allowing the auxiliary support member to move back and forth; a first bolt installed such that the first bolt goes inward through the bottom of the auxiliary support member from the outside, is coupled with the first nut, and is rotated by external operation through the horizontal aperture; and a second bolt installed such that the second bolt goes inward through the back of the body from the outside, is coupled with the second nut, and is rotated by external operation, so that the height of each of the profile supporting portions and the position of each of the shoulder contacting portions can be adjusted.

15. The health pillow of any one of claims 9 through 14, further comprising guiding means for guiding the movement of each of the profile supporting blocks or the movement of the auxiliary support member.

16. The health pillow of any one of claims 9 through 14, wherein each of the profile supporting blocks comprises a space for receiving things therein and an opening for opening the space when each of the profile supporting blocks moves up or forward from the body.

17. The health pillow of any one of claims 10 through 14, further comprising a pillowcase covering the body and the profile supporting blocks and comprising an opening or openings for exposing the bolt(s) so that the bolt(s) can be operated.

18. A health pillow comprising a neck block having a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward; a body having a central support for supporting the neck block so that the neck block can move up and down and profile supporting portions formed on the left and right sides of the central support for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion when the user lies on his/her side; and adjusting means for moving the neck block up and down with respect to the central support of the body to adjust the height of the pillow for supporting the user's neck.

19. The health pillow of claim 18, wherein the adjusting means comprises a nut fixed to the bottom of the neck block; and a bolt installed such that the bolt goes inward through the bottom of the central support from the outside is coupled with the nut and is rotated by external operation.

20. The health pillow of claim 18, further comprising guiding means for guiding the up and down movement of the neck block.

21. The health pillow of claim 19, further comprising a pillowcase covering the neck block and the body and comprising an opening for exposing the bolt so that the bolt can be operated.

22. A health pillow comprising a neck block having a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward; profile supporting blocks which are provided on the left and right sides of the neck block and which comprise profile supporting portions, respectively, for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion; a body comprising a central support for supporting the neck block so that the neck block can move up and down and left and right supports provided on the left and right sides of the central support for supporting the profile supporting blocks so that the profile supporting blocks can move up and down; first adjusting means for moving the neck block up and down with respect to the central support of the body to adjust the height of the pillow for supporting the user's neck; and second adjusting means for moving each of the profile supporting blocks up and down with respect to each of the left and right supports of the body to adjust the height of each of the profile supporting portions.

23. A health pillow comprising a neck block having a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward; profile supporting blocks which are provided on the left and right sides of the neck block and which comprise profile supporting portions, respectively, for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion and shoulder contacting portions on their front sides for allowing the user's shoulder to closely contact the pillow; a body comprising a central support for supporting the neck block so that the neck block can move up and down and left and right supports provided on the left and right sides of the central support for receiving the profile supporting blocks so that the profile supporting blocks can move up and down and/or back and forth; first adjusting means for moving the neck block up and down with respect to the central support of the body to adjust the height of the pillow for supporting the user's neck; and second adjusting means for moving each of the profile supporting blocks up and down and/or back and forth with respect to each of the left and right supports of the body to adjust at least one of the height of each of the profile supporting portions and the position of each of the shoulder contacting portions.

24. The health pillow of claim 23, wherein the first adjusting means comprises a nut fixed to the bottom of the neck block; and a bolt installed such that the bolt goes inward through the bottom of the central support from the outside is coupled with the nut and is rotated by external operation.

25. The health pillow of claim 23, wherein the profile supporting blocks are received in the left and right supports of the body so that each of the profile supporting blocks can be moved up and down and back and forth, and the second adjusting means comprises a vertical aperture formed at the back of each of the left and right supports; a horizontal aperture formed at the bottom of each of the left and right supports, a first nut fixed to the bottom of each of the profile supporting blocks for allowing each of the profile supporting blocks to move up and down; a second nut fixed to the back of each of the profile supporting blocks for allowing each of the profile supporting blocks to move back and forth; a first bolt installed at the vertical aperture such that the first bolt can be moved, is coupled with the first nut, and is rotated by external operation; and a second bolt installed at the vertical aperture such that the second bolt can be moved, is coupled with the second nut, and is rotated by external operation.

26. The health pillow of claim 23, wherein the second adjusting means comprises a vertical aperture formed at the back of each of the left and right supports of the body; an auxiliary support member which is received in each of the left and right supports so that the auxiliary support member can be moved up and down and which receives each of the profile supporting blocks therein so that each of the profile supporting blocks can be moved back and forth; a first nut fixed to the bottom of the auxiliary support member for allowing the auxiliary support member to move up and down; a second nut fixed to the back of each of the profile supporting blocks for allowing each of the profile supporting blocks to move back and forth; a first bolt installed such that the first bolt goes inward through the bottom of each of the left and right supports from the outside, is coupled with the first nut, and is rotated by external operation; and a second bolt installed such that the second bolt goes inward through the back of the auxiliary support member from the outside, is coupled with the second nut, and is rotated by external operation through the vertical aperture.

27. The health pillow of claim 23, wherein the second adjusting means comprises a horizontal aperture formed at the bottom of each of the left and right supports of the body; an auxiliary support member which is received in each of the left and right supports so that the auxiliary support member can be moved back and forth and which receives each of the profile supporting blocks therein so that each of the profile supporting blocks can be moved up and down; a first nut fixed to the bottom of each of the profile supporting blocks for allowing each of the profile supporting blocks to move up and down; a second nut fixed to the back of the auxiliary support member for allowing the auxiliary support member to move back and forth; a first bolt installed such that the first bolt goes inward through the bottom of the auxiliary support member from the outside, is coupled with the first nut, and is rotated by external operation through the horizontal aperture; and a second bolt installed such that the second bolt goes inward through the back of the body from the outside, is coupled with the second nut, and is rotated by external operation.

28. The health pillow of any one of claims 23 through 27, further comprising guiding means for guiding the movement of the neck block and guiding means for guiding the movement of each of the profile supporting blocks or the movement of the auxiliary support member.

29. The health pillow of any one of claims 23 through 27, wherein each of the profile supporting blocks comprises a space for receiving things therein and an opening for opening the space when each of the profile supporting blocks moves up or forward from the body.

30. The health pillow of any one of claims 25 through 27, further comprising a pillowcase covering the body and the profile supporting blocks and comprising openings for exposing the first and second bolts so that the bolts can be operated.

31. A health pillow comprising a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward; shoulder contacting portions for allowing the user's shoulders to closely contact the pillow; and band keeping means for keeping a fixing band for fixing the user's head to the pillow so that the user cannot raise the head up.

32. The health pillow of claim 31, further comprising adjusting means for adjusting the height of the neck portion and/or adjusting means for adjusting the position of each of the shoulder contacting portions.

Description:

TECHNICAL FIELD

[0001] The present invention relates to a pillow which can correct and protect the cervical vertebrae when a user takes a rest or sleeps with his/her head on the pillow, and more particularly, to a pillow allowing a user to sleep in an optimal physical position ergonomically considering the user's physical condition and body shape.

BACKGROUND ART

[0002] Many people complain that they feel stiff in the back of the neck, cannot keep the neck steady, and have pain in the neck. These symptoms usually arise form not using or incorrectly using a pillow, or more precisely, using a pillow which is not suitable to a user's body shape and physical condition. As is widely known, people unconsciously change their position many times while they sleep. Conventional pillows have uniform heights regardless of users' sleeping positions, and the height of a particular pillow may not suitable for its users in all positions. Such pillows not only disturb users' sleep but also cause the above symptoms since the cervical vertebrae within the cervical area are pressed due to the weight of the head to thus extend and contract abnormally.

[0003] These problems occur in not only normal pillows but also in conventional special pillows for the cervical area.

[0004] For an improved conventional pillow for protecting the cervical vertebrae, Korean Patent Publication No. 10-0281237 discloses a peculiar structure having several curved ribs formed to support the cervical area and the back part of the head and disperse pressure arising from the weight of the head in a direction in which the cervical vertebrae in the cervical area extend. In other words, the structure supports the cervical vertebrae in a normal curve and lightly stretches the cervical vertebrae, thereby naturally correcting an abnormal bend of the cervical vertebrae.

[0005] Japanese Patent Laid-open Publication No. hei 9-215573 discloses a relatively simple structure having a neck pillow portion at its center for supporting the cervical area when a user lies on his back and on his side and supporting portions at opposite sides for supporting a user's head at a height corresponding to the width of one shoulder when the user turns on his/her side. U.S. Pat. No. 5,479,667 discloses a relatively more elaborate structure designed to correctly support the thoracic vertebrae and cervical vertebrae when a user lies facing upward or turns on his/her side considering the ideal alignment of the thoracic vertebrae and cervical vertebrae. Korean Utility Model No. 20-0226947 discloses a structure in which the center of the above-described profile supporting portion is concave so that the user's ear is not pressed. U.S. Pat. No. 6,006,380 discloses a pillow having thin wedge-shaped plates for adjusting the height of a neck portion.

[0006] In order to correct abnormal alignment of the cervical vertebrae, a means for steadily supporting the cervical area and the back of the head in their correct positions and lightly stretching the cervical vertebrae so that normal alignment of the cervical vertebrae can be well maintained when a user lies facing upward is required.

[0007] The rib structure disclosed in Korean Patent Publication No. 10-0281237 is a good example of a means for stretching the cervical vertebrae. However, a means for fixing a user's head to a pillow in order to correctly put the head on the rib structure is not provided, so the rib structure of the pillow cannot function properly for a patient having problem in the cervical vertebrae.

[0008] In an ideal sleeping position for protecting the cervical vertebrae, the cervical vertebrae should be a slightly curved upward and should not curve laterally when a person lies facing upward, and should be parallel to the ground forming a straight line with the thoracic vertebrae when a person lies on his/her side. For this, each portion of a pillow has a proper height and position to correspond to each portion of a user's body.

[0009] However, people have different body sizes and shapes and different physical conditions, so their cervical areas and profiles have different heights and positions with respect to the ground when lying on the ground. Accordingly, a function of adjusting each portion of a pillow to suit the user's body shape and physical condition is desired.

[0010] U.S. Pat. No. 6,006,380 discloses the adjustment of height only for the cervical area but does not propose adjustment to suit the length of a user's neck and the width of the user's shoulders. Accordingly, U.S. Pat. No. 6,006,380 does not provide a structure which can be adjusted to be suitable to any user's physical condition, age and body shape.

DISCLOSURE OF THE INVENTION

[0011] It is a first object of the present invention is provide a pillow allowing a neck portion to correctly support the cervical area considering the user's body shape so that cervical vertebrae are exactly stretched and corrected.

[0012] It is a second object of the present invention to provide a pillow having several portions which can be adjusted according to the physical condition of a user's body shape so that the user can maintain an optimal position for stretching, correcting, and protecting the cervical vertebrae.

[0013] It is a third object of the present invention to provide a pillow which is used for correcting the body shape of a user having raised shoulders or shoulders leaning to one side, curing patients having problems in the cervical vertebrae by stretching and correcting the cervical vertebrae naturally, or treating the emergency patients.

[0014] It is a fourth object of the present invention to provide a pillow having an internal space which can be conveniently utilized.

[0015] It is a fifth object of the present invention to provide a pillow having pressing units such as magnets which can stimulate principal pressure points on a human body.

[0016] To achieve the first object of the invention, there is provided a health pillow including a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward; profile supporting portions provided on the left and right sides of the neck portion for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion when the user lies on his/her side; and shoulder contacting portions provided on the front surfaces of the respective profile supporting portions for making the pillow closely contact the user's shoulders.

[0017] Since the shoulder contacting portions closely contact the user's shoulders, the health pillow can be fixed with respect to the user. Accordingly, the user's cervical vertebrae can be correctly supported on the neck portion, thereby exactly stretching and correcting the cervical vertebrae.

[0018] To achieve the second object of the invention, in one embodiment, there is provided a health pillow including a body having a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward and supports formed on the left and right sides of the neck portion; and profile supporting blocks which are received in the respective left and right supports of the body and include profile supporting portions, respectively, for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion when the user lies on his/her side, the heights of the profile supporting portions being adjustable.

[0019] In another embodiment, there is provided a health pillow including a body having a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward and left and right supports formed on the left and right sides of the neck portion; profile supporting blocks which are received in the respective left and right supports of the body and include profile supporting portions for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion when the user lies on his/her side and shoulder contacting portions for making the user's shoulders closely contact the pillow, the shoulder contacting portions being formed on the front side of the respective profile supporting blocks; and an adjusting unit for moving each of the profile supporting blocks up and down and/or back and forth with respect to the body so that at least one of the height of each of the profile supporting portions and the position of each of the shoulder contacting portions can be adjusted.

[0020] In yet another embodiment, there is provided a health pillow including a neck block having a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward; a body having a central support for supporting the neck block so that the neck block can move up and down and profile supporting portions formed on the left and right sides of the central support for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion when the user lies on his/her side; and an adjusting unit for moving the neck block up and down with respect to the central support of the body to adjust the height of the pillow for supporting the user's neck.

[0021] In yet another embodiment, there is provided a health pillow including a neck block having a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward; profile supporting blocks which are provided on the left and right sides of the neck block and which include profile supporting portions, respectively, for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion; a body including a central support for supporting the neck block so that the neck block can move up and down and left and right supports provided on the left and right sides of the central support for supporting the profile supporting blocks so that the profile supporting blocks can move up and down; a first adjusting unit for moving the neck block up and down with respect to the central support of the body to adjust the height of the pillow for supporting the user's neck; and a second adjusting unit for moving each of the profile supporting blocks up and down with respect to each of the left and right supports of the body to adjust the height of each of the profile supporting portions.

[0022] In yet another embodiment, there is provided a health pillow including a neck block having a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward; profile supporting blocks which are provided on the left and right sides of the neck block and which include profile supporting portions, respectively, for supporting the side of the user's face at a predetermined height higher than the neck portion and shoulder contacting portions on their front sides for allowing the user's shoulder to closely contact the pillow; a body including a central support for supporting the neck block so that the neck block can move up and down and left and right supports provided on the left and right sides of the central support for receiving the profile supporting blocks so that the profile supporting blocks can move up and down and/or back and forth; a first adjusting unit for moving the neck block up and down with respect to the central support of the body to adjust the height of the_pillow for supporting the user's neck; and a second adjusting unit for moving each of the profile supporting blocks up and down and/or back and forth with respect to each of the left and right supports of the body to adjust at least one of the height of each of the profile supporting portions and the position of each of the shoulder contacting portions.

[0023] To achieve the third object of the invention, there is provided a health pillow including a neck portion for supporting a user's neck at a predetermined height when the user lies facing upward; shoulder contacting portions for allowing the user's shoulders to closely contact the pillow; and a band keeping unit for keeping a fixing band for fixing the user's head to the pillow so that the user cannot raise the head up.

[0024] Preferably, the health pillow further includes an adjusting unit for adjusting the height of the neck portion and/or an adjusting unit for adjusting the position of each of the shoulder contacting portions.

[0025] To achieve the fourth object of the invention, there is provided a health pillow including an empty space within a body, a neck block, or a profile supporting block and an opening so that elements good for health can be easily put in the empty space within each block which is separated from the body by a one-touch method or by operating a unit for adjusting the position of each block.

[0026] To achieve the fifth object of the invention, there is provided a health pillow including pressing units such as magnets, jade, or pressing protrusions at positions of the pillow corresponding to main pressure points on the neck, the back of the head, the side of the face, and the side of the head of a human body.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0027] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a health pillow having an integrated structure according to a first embodiment of the present invention.

[0028] FIG. 2 is a plan view of the health pillow shown in FIG. 1.

[0029] FIG. 3 is a front view of the health pillow shown in FIG. 1.

[0030] FIG. 4 is a plan view of the health pillow shown in FIG. 1 in a state in which a user is resting his neck on a neck portion facing upward.

[0031] FIG. 5 is a side view of the health pillow shown in FIG. 1 in a state in which a user is resting his neck on a neck portion facing upward.

[0032] FIG. 6 is a side view of the health pillow shown in FIG. 1 in a state in which a user is resting his head on a profile supporting portion on his side.

[0033] FIG. 7 is a perspective view of a health pillow having a vent structure according to a second embodiment of the present invention.

[0034] FIG. 8 is a vertical sectional view of the health pillow shown in FIG. 7.

[0035] FIG. 9 is a vertical sectional view of a health pillow having a receiving function in addition to a ventilation structure shown in FIG. 7.

[0036] FIG. 10 is an exploded perspective view of a health pillow having an adjustable-height neck block according to a third embodiment of the present invention.

[0037] FIG. 11 is a side sectional view of the health pillow shown in FIG. 9 in use.

[0038] FIG. 12 is a perspective view of a health pillow having an adjustable-height profile supporting block according to a fourth embodiment of the present invention.

[0039] FIG. 13 is a partially cut-away side view of the health pillow shown in FIG. 12 in a state in which a user is resting the side of his/her face on a profile supporting block on his side.

[0040] FIG. 14 is a partially exploded perspective view of a health pillow having an adjustable-length profile supporting block according to a fifth embodiment of the present invention.

[0041] FIG. 15 is a partially cut-away plan view of the health pillow shown in FIG. 14 in use.

[0042] FIG. 16 is a perspective view of a health pillow having an adjustable-length shoulder contact block of a drawer type according to a sixth embodiment of the present invention.

[0043] FIG. 17 is a perspective view of a health pillow having an adjustable-height neck block and an adjustable-height and -length profile supporting block according to a seventh embodiment of the present invention.

[0044] FIG. 18 is a vertical sectional view of the health pillow shown in FIG. 17.

[0045] FIG. 19 is a sectional view of the health pillow, taken along the line A-A in FIG. 18.

[0046] FIG. 20 is a perspective view of a health pillow having an adjustable-height neck portion and an adjustable-height and -length profile supporting block according to an eighth embodiment of the present invention.

[0047] FIG. 21 is a side sectional view of a adjustment structure of the profile supporting block of the health pillow shown in FIG. 20.

[0048] FIG. 22 is a perspective view of a health pillow for patients requiring shoulder correction or cervical vertebrae correction according to a ninth embodiment of the present invention.

[0049] FIG. 23 is a sectional view of a band keeper of the health pillow shown in FIG. 22.

[0050] FIG. 24 is a plan view of the health pillow shown in FIG. 22 in use.

BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION

[0051] Hereinafter, preferred embodiments of the present invention will be described with reference to the attached drawings.

[0052] [First Embodiment]

[0053] FIGS. 1 through 6 show a health pillow of an integration type. A body 100 of the integration-type health pillow has a flat bottom and is symmetrical. In the health pillow, a neck portion 110 at the center, profile supporting portions 120 and 120′ on the left and right sides, and shoulder contacting portions 130 and 130′ beside the respective profile supporting portions 120 and 120′ on the front of the health pillow, are integrated. This pillow can be formed from wood, stone or ceramics. Preferably, mass production can be achieved by molding flexible resin foam such as urethane foam. It is apparent that other general resin or any other material can be used and two or more kinds of materials can be used considering the function of each portion. For example, a neck portion can be made of a hard material, and a profile supporting portion can be made of a soft material. The same description of selection of a material will be applied to other embodiments set forth below.

[0054] Referring to FIG. 2, extending portions 111 and 111′ for dispersing the weight of the back of a user's head to increase comfort extend from the neck portion 110 toward back left and back right, respectively. An edge 112 on the front of the neck portion 110 extends along the shape of a portion where the neck and the shoulders meet and is a little curved backward not to interfere with the user's back. Boundaries 113 and 113′ where the neck portion 110 meets the left and right profile supporting portions 112 and 112′ are formed to have substantially a parabola shape along the curve of a portion where the neck below ears meet the face. Here, a line between the most inner points of the left and right parabolas matches a line between vertexes of the neck portion 110.

[0055] When viewed from the front, the neck portion 110 has the shape of a circular arc with a larger radius of curvature than the neck (see FIG. 3) so that the neck portion 110 can stably receive the cervical area and does not interfere with the user's motion when the user rolls. The side section of the neck portion 110 is nearly a semi-oval having a radius of curvature obtained considering the height of the cervical area and the curvature of the cervical vertebrae (see FIG. 5).

[0056] Each of the profile supporting portions 120 and 120′ is a little sunken to stably receive the side of the user's face (see FIG. 3) and has an appropriate height for the width of one shoulder so that the cervical vertebrae and the thoracic vertebrae can be parallel to the ground when the user lies on his/her side (see FIG. 6).

[0057] Each of the shoulder contacting portions 130 and 130′ is separated from the vertex of the neck portion 110 considering the length of the user's neck so that the shoulder contacting portions 130 and 130′ can closely contact the user's shoulders. As shown in FIGS. 2 and 4, the shoulder contacting portions 130 and 130′ are formed to be concave so that they can stably contact the shoulders along the user's shoulder line.

[0058] The above-described shapes and conditions of individual portions of the pillow will be also applied to embodiments set forth.

[0059] The following description concerns the functions of a heath pillow according to the first embodiment of the present invention. Referring to FIGS. 4 and 5, in a state where a user's shoulders closely contact the shoulder contacting portions 130 and 130′ when the user lies facing upward, the pillow is settled with respect to the user. Accordingly, the cervical area and the back of the head can be located at a correct position, more specifically, the vertex of the neck portion 110. In such posture, the center of gravity of the head is usually in the rear of the neck portion 110. Accordingly, the load of the head acts as force pushing the pillow in a direction of an arrow “a”, but the pillow is not pushed because the neck portion 110 is closely supported by the shoulders and confined between the shoulders and the head. Thus, the load of the head acts as force Fl sliding the head backward along the curve of the neck portion 110. Here, the cervical vertebrae within the cervical area are stretched by a horizontal component F2 of the force F1. Due to such stretching operation, the bent of the alignment of cervical vertebrae can be corrected. When the user turns on his/her side, the side of the user's face is comfortably received in one of the profile supporting portions 120 or 120′, as shown in FIG. 6. Here, the side face is supported at a height of the profile supporting portion 120 or 120′ which is set considering the width of the user's one shoulder. Accordingly, the cervical vertebrae and the thoracic vertebrae can be aligned in parallel to the ground, thereby preventing the cervical vertebrae from being pressed or forming an abnormal bend.

[0060] [Second Embodiment]

[0061] FIGS. 7 and 8 show a ventilation health pillow which is a modification of an integration type health pillow according to the first embodiment. The basic shape of a body 200 of the ventilation health pillow is the same as the first embodiment, with the exception that the inside of the body 200 is empty, pores 201 are formed on the surface of the body 200, and magnets 202 for physical and magnetic pressure are attached on the surface of the body 200. The inside of the body 200 is filled with a filler 203 such as a filter, peels of grains, or cotton. Although not shown, the body 200 can be covered with a pillowcase such as cloth or mesh.

[0062] The pores 201 allow the air to come into and go out of the pillow, so a user can feel cool when sleeping on the pillow. The magnets 202 magnetically react with a human body and physically stimulate the human body. Preferably, the magnets 202 are disposed to correspond to acupuncture points on the human body. In other words, circulation of energy and blood is accelerated by the physical and magnetic pressure, thereby helping the user to be recovered from fatigue. Instead of magnets, jade having an high affinity for a human body is used, or protrusions can be formed on the pillow, in order to obtain the similar effect.

[0063] The ventilation health pillow can be provided with an opening 205 on the side of the body 200 and a cover 204 for covering the opening 205 so that things or one or more kinds of elements 207 such as herb medicines, seeds, mugworts, substance emitting far infrared rays, charcoal, deodorant, and aromatics which emit smell or energy good for a human body can be received in an inner space 206, as shown in FIG. 9. Although not shown, a heating device or cooling device can be installed on the surface of the pillow or in an empty space within the pillow.

[0064] Such ventilation structure according to the second embodiment can be applied to other embodiments set forth.

[0065] [Third Embodiment]

[0066] FIGS. 10 and 11 show a health pillow having a neck block 340 whose height can be adjusted according to a user's physical condition. The neck block 340 is received in and supported by a central support 350 of a body 300 so that the neck block 340 can be separated from the body 300 and moved straight up and down. A neck portion 310 having the above-described shape is provided on the top surface of the neck block 340. Profile supporting portions 320 and 320′ and shoulder contacting portions 330 and 330′ are integrally formed on the body 300.

[0067] As shown in FIG. 10, a unit for allowing the neck block 340 to move up and down for adjustment of its height includes a nut 341 provided at the center of the bottom of the neck block 340 and a separate bolt 351 provided at a position corresponding to the nut 341 on the bottom of the central support 350. Alternatively, instead of integrally forming the nut 341, a separate nut can be inserted. The bolt 351 is installed such that it goes inward through the bottom of the central support 350 from the outside. Here, the bolt 351 is fixed by a snap ring 352 so that the bolt 351 can be rotated by external operation without coming off the pillow. The bolt 351 can be operated using a screwdriver or coin outside. Preferably, a handle 356 is integrally provided at the bolt 351 so that a user can directly rotate the bolt 351 using the handle 356. A recess 353 for receiving the head of the bolt 351 or the handle 35 is formed at the outside of the bottom of the central support 350 so that the head or the handle 356 does not protrude.

[0068] When the bolt 351 is operated to rotate, the nut 341 coupled to the bolt 351 goes up or down in the progressing direction of a spiral made by the rotation to thus move up or down the whole neck block 340. Accordingly, a user can adjust a height at which his/her neck is supported according to his/her physical condition.

[0069] A unit for straight guiding the neck block 340 when the neck block 340 is moved up or down includes a plurality of guiding holes 342 formed on the bottom of the neck block 340 and guiding pillars 354 formed on the bottom of the central support 350 facing the bottom of the neck block 340 such that they are inserted into the guiding holes 342. In addition, a groove 343 and a protrusion 355 which have a dovetail-shaped section are formed on the wall of the neck block 340 and the wall of the central support 350 facing the wall of the neck block 340, respectively, in a direction in which the neck block 340 is moved.

[0070] The neck block 340 can have a receiving space therein so that elements good for health can be received.

[0071] Meanwhile, graduations 344 are marked on one upper edge portion of the neck block 340 so that a user can see a height at which his/her neck is supported according to his/her physical condition. Since the user can recognize his/her physical condition numerically, the user can exactly and easily adjust the neck block 340 to a height suitable to his/her physical condition referring to the graduations 344.

[0072] [Fourth Embodiment]

[0073] FIGS. 12 and 13 show a health pillow having profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′ whose heights can be adjusted according to a user's physical condition (width of each shoulder). The profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′ are received in and supported by left and right supports 470 and 470′, respectively, of a body 400 so that they can be separated from the body 400 and vertically moved up and down. A neck portion 410 having the above-described shape is integrally formed at the center of the body 400. Profile supporting portions 420 and 420′ are provided on the top surfaces of the respective movable profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′, and shoulder contacting portions 430 and 430′ are provided on the front surfaces of the respective profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′.

[0074] A unit for allowing each of the profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′ to move up and down for adjustment of its height includes a nut 461 provided on the bottom of each of the profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′ and an adjustment bolt 471 provided at a position corresponding to the nut 461 on the bottom of each of the left and right supports 470 and 470′. Alternatively, instead of integrally forming the nut 461, a separate nut can be inserted. The bolt 471 is installed such that it goes inward through the bottom of each of the left and right supports 470 and 470′ from the outside. Here, the bolt 471 is fixed by a snap ring 472 so that the bolt 471 can be rotated by external operation without coming off. A recess 473 for receiving a head or grip 476 of the bolt 417 is formed at the outside of the bottom of each of the left and right supports 470 and 470′.

[0075] When the bolt 471 is operated to rotate, the nut 461 coupled to the bolt 471 goes up or down in the progressing direction of a spiral made by the rotation to thus move up or down each of the profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′. Accordingly, a user can adjust the heights of the profile supporting portions 420 and 420′ according to his/her physical condition (the width of each shoulder).

[0076] In order to straight guide each of the profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′, a groove 463 having a dovetail-shaped section is formed on the wall of each of the profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′, and a rail 475 corresponding to the groove 463 is formed on the wall of each of the left and right supports 470 and 470′.

[0077] Graduations 464 indicating a height are marked on one upper edge portion of each of the profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′.

[0078] Preferably, each of the profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′ has an empty space inside and an opening 465 at its side. The opening 465 is exposed when each of the profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′ is satisfactorily lifted up from each of the left and right supports 470 and 470′. Here, as described above, elements good for health can be received in each of the profile supporting blocks 460 and 460′ through the opening 465.

[0079] In this embodiment, a neck portion is integrated into a body, but a separate neck block as shown in the third embodiment can be provided so that the height of the neck portion can be adjusted.

[0080] [Fifth Embodiment]

[0081] FIGS. 14 and 15 show a health pillow having profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′ moving back and forth to adjust the length of the pillow according to a user's physical condition (the length of the user's neck). The profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′ are received in left and right supports 570 and 570′, respectively, of a body 500 so that they can be separated from the body 500 and moved back and forth. A neck portion 510 having the above-described shape is integrally formed at the center of the body 500. Profile supporting portions 520 and 520′ are provided on the top surfaces of the respective movable profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′, and shoulder contacting portions 530 and 530′ are provided on the front surfaces of the respective detachable profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′.

[0082] A unit for allowing each of the profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′ to move back and forth for adjustment of a distance between the user's shoulder and each of the shoulder contacting portions 530 and 530′ includes a nut 561 provided on the back of each of the profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′ and an adjustment bolt 571 provided at a position corresponding to the nut 561 on the back of each of the left and right supports 570 and 570′. Alternatively, instead of integrally forming the nut 561, a separate nut can be inserted. The bolt 571 is installed such that it goes inward through the back of each of the left and right supports 570 and 570′ from the outside. Here, the bolt 571 is fixed by a snap ring 572 so that the bolt 571 can be rotated by external operation without coming off. A recess 573 for receiving the head of the bolt 517 or a handle 576 is formed at the outside of the back of each of the left and right supports 570 and 570′.

[0083] When the bolt 571 is operated to rotate, the nut 561 coupled to the bolt 571 moves forward or backward in the progressing direction of a spiral made by the rotation to thus move each of the whole profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′ forward or backward. Accordingly, a user can adjust each of the shoulder contacting portions 530 and 530′ to an appropriate position according to his/her physical condition (the length of the neck).

[0084] In order to straight guide each of the profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′, a groove 563 having a dovetail-shaped section is formed on the wall of each of the profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′, and a rail 575 corresponding to the groove 563 is formed on the wall of each of the left and right supports 570 and 570′.

[0085] Graduations 564 (check FIG. 14) indicating a length of the pillow are marked on one upper edge portion of each of the profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′.

[0086] Preferably, each of the profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′ has an empty space inside and an opening 565 at its side. The opening 565 is exposed when each of the profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′ is satisfactorily moved forward from each of the left and right supports 570 and 570′. Here, as described above, elements good for health can be received in each of the profile supporting blocks 560 and 560′ through the opening 565.

[0087] In this embodiment, a neck portion is integrated into a body, but a separate neck block as shown in the third embodiment can be provided so that the height of the neck portion can be adjusted.

[0088] [Sixth Embodiment]

[0089] FIG. 16 shows a modification of the health pillow according to the fifth embodiment. A pillow shown in FIG. 16 includes drawer-type movable shoulder contacting blocks 560A and 560A′ which can be moved to contact a user's shoulders. A neck portion 510A and profile supporting portions 520A and 520A′ are integrated with a body. Shoulder contacting portions 530A and 530A′ are provided on the front surfaces of the respective shoulder contacting blocks 560A and 560A′. A unit for allowing the shoulder contacting blocks 560A and 560A′ to move is the same as in the fourth embodiment.

[0090] The drawer-type shoulder contacting blocks 560A and 560A′ according to the fifth embodiment can be used for keeping valuables.

[0091] In this embodiment, a neck portion is integrated into a body, but a separate neck block as shown in the third embodiment can be provided so that the height of the neck portion can be adjusted.

[0092] [Seventh Embodiment]

[0093] FIGS. 17 through 19 show a health pillow having an adjustable-height neck block 640 and adjustable-height profile supporting blocks 660 and 660′ which can be moved back and forth to contact a user's shoulders. According to the seventh embodiment, a height of a pillow for supporting a user's neck, a height of the pillow for supporting the side of the user's face, and a length of the pillow for supporting the user's shoulders can be adjusted according to the user's physical conditions. The neck block 640 is received in and supported by a central support 650 of a body 600 so that the neck block 640 can be separated from the body 600 and moved straight up and down. The profile supporting blocks 660 and 660′ are received in and supported by left and right supports 670 and 670′, respectively, of the body 600 so that they can be separated from the body 600 and vertically moved up and down together with separate auxiliary support members 680 and 680′ and they can be moved forward from the respective auxiliary support members 680 and 680′. A neck portion 610 having the above-described shape is provided on the top surface of the neck block 640. Profile supporting portions 620 and 620′ are provided on the top surfaces of the respective the profile supporting blocks 660 and 660′, and shoulder contacting portions 630 and 630′ are provided on the front surfaces of the respective profile supporting blocks 660 and 660′.

[0094] Structures for moving up and down and guiding the neck block 640 are the same as those described in the third embodiment. The profile supporting blocks 660 and 660′ are moved up and down together with the respective auxiliary support members 680 and 680′. Structures for moving up and down and guiding the auxiliary support members 680 and 680′ with respect to the body 600 are the same as those described in the fourth embodiment. Structures for moving back and forth and guiding the profile supporting blocks 660 and 660′ with respect to the auxiliary support members 680 and 680′ are the same as those described in the fifth embodiment.

[0095] However, in the seventh embodiment, a wide aperture 676 is formed at the back of each of the left and right supports 670 and 670′ to allow the movement of a bolt 671, and a wide aperture 682 is formed at the bottom of each of the auxiliary support members 680 and 680′ to allow the movement of a bolt 681. As shown in FIG. 19, the wide aperture 676 is opened upward so that the assembly of each of the profile supporting blocks 660 and 660′ and each of the auxiliary support members 680 and 680′ can be easily fixed to each of the left and right supports 670 and 670′.

[0096] Reference numeral 690 denotes a pillowcase virtually illustrated. Although the pillowcase 690 is not positively necessary, it is preferable to provide the pillowcase 690 to achieve favorable appearance and agreeable touch. Considering movement of each block for adjusting the length or height of the pillow, the pillowcase 690 can be made of material such as textile woven of latex fiber or spandex having tension and elasticity. For example, the pillowcase 690 can be made by inserting polyester or latex in double spandex cloth. For each of the bolts 671 and 681 exposed outside the body 600, as shown in FIG. 17, an opening 691 is formed at a corresponding portion of the pillowcase 690 so that the head or handle of the bolt 671 or 681 can be operably exposed. Preferably, the edge of the opening 691 is fixed to the body 600 using glue or a magic tape 692 so that the pillowcase 690 does not cover the head or handle of the bolts 671 and 681 due to movement or deformation of the opening 691.

[0097] The pillowcase 690 can be applied to other embodiments described above and below.

[0098] Although not shown in the drawings, in the seventh embodiment, an auxiliary support member can be made to move back and forth with respect to a body, and a profile supporting block is made to move up and down with respect to the auxiliary support member.

[0099] In addition, in the seventh embodiment, a neck portion can be integrated with a body of a pillow, so the pillow has a structure in which only the height of a profile supporting portion of a profile supporting block and only the length of a pillow for allowing the pillow to closely contact a user's shoulder can be adjusted.

[0100] [Eighth Embodiment]

[0101] FIGS. 20 and 21 show a modification of the seventh embodiment. A pillow shown in FIGS. 20 and 21 has a simpler structure in which profile supporting blocks 760 and 760′ can be directly moved up, down, forward, and backward without separate auxiliary support members. Nuts 761a and 761b are integrally formed on the bottom and the back, respectively, of each of the profile supporting blocks 760 and 760′. Bolts 771a and 771b are installed at the bottom and the back, respectively, of each of left and right supports 770 and 770′ of a body 700 to correspond to the respective nuts 761a and 761b. The bolts 771a and 771b are installed such that they inward go through the bottom and the back, respectively, of each of the left and right supports 770 and 770′ from the outside. Here, the bolts 771a and 771b are fixed by snap rings 772a and 772b, respectively, so that the bolts 771a and 771b can be rotated by external operation without coming off. Wide apertures 776a and 776b for allowing the movement of the respective bolts 771a and 771b when each of the profile supporting blocks 760 and 760′ moves are formed at the respective outsides of the bottom and back of each of the left and right supports 770 and 770′. Like the seventh embodiment, the wide aperture 776b has an opening at one side considering assembly.

[0102] In the eighth embodiment, a neck portion can be integrated with a body of a pillow, so the pillow has a structure in which only the height of a profile supporting portion and only the length of a pillow for allowing the pillow to closely contact a user's shoulder can be adjusted.

[0103] [Ninth Embodiment]

[0104] FIGS. 22 through 24 show an application of the third and fifth embodiments. A pillow shown in FIGS. 22 through 24 is provided as a cervical vertebrae correction apparatus for correcting the body shape of a person having raised shoulders or shoulders leaning to one side and curing a patient having a problems in the cervical vertebrae or adopting an emergency measure. For such cervical vertebrae correction apparatus, not only the physical conditions of a patient should be considered, but also the patient's head should be kept from moving. Accordingly, an adjustable-height neck block 840 as shown in the third embodiment is provided at the center of a body 800. Movable shoulder contacting blocks 860 and 860′ as shown in the fifth embodiment are provided on the left and right sides of the body. A separate head fixing band 890 is provided. Band keepers 891 and 891′ for keeping the head fixing band 890 are fixed to the body 800 at the back left and right. As shown in FIG. 23, each of the band keepers 891 and 891′ is fixed by a pin 893 so that it can rotate and can be received in a receiving entrance 892 formed on the body 800 when it is not used.

[0105] According to the ninth embodiment, in a state in which the neck block 840 and the shoulder contacting blocks 860 and 860′ are properly adjusted to the physical conditions of a patient, as shown in FIG. 24, the patient's head can be laid on the pillow and fixed by fastening the head fixing band 890 around the head and the band keepers 891 and 891′. Then, the patient cannot raise his/her head or turn over on his/her side, so the pillow is effective in correcting vertical vertebrae or treating a patient having problem in the cervical vertebrae.

[0106] A head fixing band according to the ninth embodiment can be applied to all of the above embodiments. Even if a user is not a patient having a problem in the cervical vertebrae or needing an emergency measure, the head fixing band can be used for correcting the user's body shape or vertical vertebrae by himself/herself.

[0107] In the above-described embodiments, a bolt for adjusting each block of a pillow can be moved under electric power. Instead of a bolt and a nut, a rectilinear motion actuator such as a linear motor or hydraulic or pneumatic cylinder can be used to meet the convenience of operation.

[0108] It is apparent that the present invention can be embodied in many different modifications and applications in addition to the above-described embodiments.

[0109] Industrial Applicability

[0110] According to the present invention, unlike a conventional pillow for protecting cervical vertebrae, a pillow can be steadily fixed with respect to a user so that the user's cervical area can be correctly supported. In addition, the present invention allows a user to properly adjust the height and length of a pillow to his/her body shape and physical conditions so that the user can rest in an optimal posture. Accordingly, a pillow according to the present invention effectively eases the pains arising from deformation of cervical vertebrae and is advantageous of correcting the body shape of a person having raised shoulders or shoulders leaning to one side. In addition, a pillow according to the present invention is useful to treat a patient having a problem in cervical vertebrae when it is difficult to use a cast or to adopt an emergency measure for a patient whose cervical vertebrae are injured in a traffic accident. Moreover, according to the present invention, elements good for health can be received in an empty space within a pillow, so aroma therapy can be conveniently performed. By providing a pressing unit simulating acupuncture points, a pillow according to the present invention helps energy and blood to circulate smoothly, so the pillow is good for health.