Title:
HAND AND FINGER HOLDING DEVICE FOR DISABLED HANDS
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A device for comfortably holding, immobilizing, separating and steadying the fingers of a person during a manicure who has suffered a debilitating disease, stroke or accident resulting in trembling, disfigured or paralyzed fingers and hands. The device includes a casing formed from a compressible material such as a foam type disc having rounded ridges about the exterior side edges, and narrow slots cut into the concave portions of the outer rounded ridges. All five fingers of one's hand can be inserted into the slots so that the walls of the slots expand and compress about the fingers locking the device to the hand. The device allows for any size and shaped fingers. The device allows for the hands and fingers to fold inwardly. A second version has an attachment strap that wraps about the exterior of the disc closing off the slots and further locking the finger to the disc.



Inventors:
Baur, Davida Ann (US)
Application Number:
11/684941
Publication Date:
09/18/2008
Filing Date:
03/12/2007
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A45D29/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:



Primary Examiner:
KALACH, BRIANNE E
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Davida Ann Baur (Satellite Beach, FL, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. A device for use during manicures, comprising: A disc formed from a compressible material having slots along an outer perimeter for allowing fingers to be inserted therein; and means for restraining the fingers within the slots, wherein the disc both separates and keeps the fingers steady during a manicure.

2. The device of claim 1, wherein the compressible disc is formed from: Foam.

3. The device of claim 1, wherein the slots include: 5 slots

4. The device of claim 1, wherein the disc further includes: Rounded ridges about the outer perimeter, each of the ridges having a convex protruding portion and a concave inner portion, each of the slots being in the concave inner portion.

5. The device of claim 1, wherein the restraining means is the compressible material.

6. The device of claim 1, wherein the restraining means includes: A strap.

7. The device of claim 6, wherein the strap further includes one end fixably attached to a portion of the exterior of the disc, and a second end that can attach and detach to the exterior of the disc.

8. The device of claim 6, wherein the strap includes: Hook and fasteners

9. The device of claim 1, wherein the disc is sized for a right hand.

10. The device of claim 1, wherein the disc is sized for a left hand.

11. A method of comfortably immobilizing fingers for a manicure, comprising the steps of: Inserting fingers into slots cut into sides of a casing formed from a compressible material; and Compressing and expanding portions of the slots about sides of the fingers, wherein the fingers are comfortably immobilized and locked to the casing.

12. The method of claim 11, further comprising the step of: Wrapping a strap about an outside perimeter of the casing closing off exposed ends of the slots.

13. The method of claim 12, wherein the strap includes: Hook and loop fasteners.

14. The method of claim 11, wherein the casing has a substantially disc shape.

15. The method of claim 14, wherein the disc shape further includes: rounded ridges about the perimeter of the disc shape.

16. A device for use during manicures, comprising: A casing formed from a compressible material having five slots along an outer perimeter for allowing fingers to be inserted therein, and means for restraining the fingers within the slots, wherein casing and the slots both separates and keeps the fingers steady during a manicure.

17. The device of claim 16, wherein the casing includes; A substantially disc shape.

18. The device of claim 17, wherein the disc shape further includes: Rounded ridges about the perimeter of the disc shape.

19. The device of claim 17, wherein the casing is formed from a foam material.

20. The device of claim 17, wherein the casing is formed from a rubber type material.

Description:

This invention relates to manicuring devices, and in particular to a reusable foam disc for holding, separating, steadying and curving hands and fingers during manicures for persons who have suffered a debilitating disease, stroke or accident resulting in trembling, spastic, disfigured, frozen, partially paralyzed or paralyzed (disabled) fingers and hands. This device will also serve to strengthen the muscles of the hands and fingers.

BACKGROUND AND PRIOR ART

Manicures require that individual fingers be immobile so that individual nails on each finger be readily accessible for the application of acrylic, enamel, polish, and/or to perform the reshaping of the nail itself. Manicures also require that the individual fingers be separated from one another to prevent smearing and smudging of the polish until the nails are completely dry. Besides physically holding one's finger by a hand, various devices have been proposed over the years for the manicurist.

Formerly, all of the various devices have been proposed for use with normal hands and fingers that can stretch out on a flat surface, that do not tremble involuntarily, and are not disfigured, frozen into place or paralyzed.

Devices such as support bases with finger separators have been proposed for performing manicures. See for example, U.S. Pat. Des. 159,662 to Patek; 2,662,534 to Swarts; 3,198,197 to Halanger; 4,296,766 to Benis; 4,441,487 to Daugherty et al.; 4,585,017 to Trujillo; 4,915,331 to Becker et al.; and 5,567,070 to Ficcadenti. However, these devices generally require the person getting the manicure to rest the hand face down in the device on a table type surface in order to be used. Thus, the manicurist who is working with a customer who can not stretch out their hands can not use such a device. Additionally, many of these devices require that the customer grasp the device which renders it useless for weak or paralyzed hands. Still furthermore, these devices do not completely steady and lock the fingers into fixed separated positions for either trembling or disfigured fingers.

Other proposals have included restraining the fingers while the hand is held face down. See for example, U.S. Pat. Nos. 2,223,204 to Carmichael; 2,546,118 to Wright; 3,416,542 to Shook and 5,076,263 to Funatogawa. However, again these devices generally require the wearer hold the hand on a table surface which is not possible for certain people.

Additional proposals have included guard shields. See for example, U.S. Pat. Nos. 2,396,154 to Campbell; 2,461,695 to McMahon; 2,479,601 to Bransfield; and 2,501,211 to Cummings. These shields either require the user insert their fingers through circular openings, or rest their fingers in side indentations on the shield. However, these devices require hardened materials with sharp edges that would be uncomfortable to the wearer—even if the user could stretch out their fingers. Additionally, the circular openings and side indentations have fixed dimensions that would not conform to different sized, swollen and disfigured fingers. Additionally, these devices require the wearer grasp the shield in order to use the shield during the manicure. This is an impossible task for a victim of paralysis.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The first objective of the present invention is to provide a device for holding, and separating the fingers of a person who has trembling, spastic, disfigured, frozen, partially paralyzed or paralyzed (disabled) fingers and hands that is comfortable to the wearer during a manicure.

The second object of this invention is to provide a device for holding, and separating the fingers of a person who has trembling, spastic, disfigured, frozen, partially paralyzed or paralyzed (disabled) disfigured fingers and hands that adjusts for all finger sizes and shapes during a manicure.

The third object of this invention is to provide a device for holding and separating the fingers of a person who has trembling, spastic, disfigured, frozen, partially paralyzed or paralyzed (disabled) fingers and hands that can lock about one's fingers so the fingers can not escape either during spasms or other involuntary movements during a manicure.

The fourth object of this invention is to provide a device for holding and separating the fingers of a person who has trembling, spastic, disfigured, frozen, partially paralyzed or paralyzed (disabled) disfigured fingers and hands that comfortably immobilizes the fingers during a manicure.

The fifth object of this invention is to provide a device for holding and separating the fingers of a person who has trembling, spastic, disfigured, frozen, partially paralyzed or paralyzed (disabled) fingers and hands that does not require the wearer to grasp the device during a manicure.

The sixth object of this invention is to provide a device for holding and separating the fingers of a person who has trembling, spastic, disfigured, frozen, partially paralyzed or paralyzed (disabled) disfigured fingers and hands is to fold the hand and the fingers inwardly in a comfortable and natural position so that the muscles and ligaments of the hand and fingers are not stretched during a manicure.

The seventh object of this invention is to provide a device for holding and separating the fingers of a person who has trembling, spastic, disfigured, frozen, partially paralyzed or paralyzed (disabled) fingers and hands that can separate the fingers even when the hand is frozen into an inward position.

The eighth object of this invention is to provide a device for holding and separating the fingers of a person who has trembling, spastic, disfigured, frozen, partially paralyzed or paralyzed (disabled) fingers and hands is to be able to hold each finger at different parts of the finger as necessary to keep the nails separated during a manicure.

The ninth object of this invention is to provide a device for holding and separating the fingers of a disabled person to increase flexibility and muscle strength.

A first preferred embodiment of the device for use during manicures, includes a disc formed from a compressible material such as foam having five slots along an outer perimeter for allowing fingers to be inserted therein, wherein inserting the fingers into the slots causes the foam to expand and compress about the fingers restraining the fingers with the slots, so that the disc both separates and keeps the fingers steady during a manicure. The disc has rounded ridges about the perimeter, each of the ridges having a convex protruding portion and a concave inner portion, each of the slots being in the concave inner portion directed toward the center axis of the disc. The device includes a second version having a strap for further restraining the fingers to the device, wherein the strap has fasteners such as hook and loop fasteners that allow the strap to be wrapped about to close off the exposed ends of the slots.

Further objects and advantages of this invention will be apparent from the following detailed description of a presently preferred embodiment which is illustrated schematically in the accompanying drawings.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES

FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of the disc invention

FIG. 2 shows the disc invention of FIG. 1 spaced from a hand.

FIG. 3 shows the hand and disc of FIG. 2 connected to one another.

FIG. 4 shows a second embodiment of the disc invention having a closing strap.

FIG. 5 shows the disc invention of FIG. 4 with the strap in a locked position.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Before explaining the disclosed embodiment of the present invention in detail it is to be understood that the invention is not limited in its application to the details of the particular arrangement shown since the invention is capable of other embodiments. Also, the terminology used herein is for the purpose of description and not of limitation.

FIG. 1 shows a perspective view of the disc invention 100 that can be formed from a sponge or foam material, such as closed cell foam with vinyl surface, having a thickness T, of approximately 1 inch, and a diameter D, of approximately 3.5 to approximately 4.5 inches. About the exterior perimeter of disc 100 are convex ridges 110, 120, 130, 140, 150, 160, 170, 180 each having respective rounded edges 112, 122, 132, 142, 152, 162, 172 and 182. Along concave edges of ridges 110-120, 120-130, 130-140, 140-150, 160-170 are five narrow cuts slots 115, 125, 135, 155, each being approximately 1 to approximately 1½ inches long running from the side exterior of the disc toward the central axis portion of the disc.

FIG. 2 shows the disc 100 of FIG. 1 spaced from and about to be connected to a hand 1. Although a right had is shown the invention can be used with a left hand to be manicured.

FIG. 3 shows the hand 1 and disc invention 100 of FIG. 2 connected to one another. Each of the fingers 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 can be inserted sideways from the exterior ends of each of the five slots 115, 125, 135, 145, 155 so that the walls of each of the slots expand and compress about the sides of each respective finger, locking the fingers in place to the disc. Additionally, the fingers can be pushed tip first into sides of the slots. The palm 60 of the hand 1 (FIG. 2) is positioned over the central mid-portion 190 (FIG. 1) of the disc invention 100.

FIG. 4 shows a second embodiment of the disc invention 200 having a closing strap 300, having a length of approximately 13 inches and a width of approximately 1 inch. FIG. 5 shows the disc invention 200 of FIG. 4 with the strap 300 in a locked position. Referring to FIGS. 4-5, the second embodiment disc invention 200 includes ridges 210, 220, 230, 240, 250, 260, 270, 280 and respective slot cuts 215, 225, 235, 245, 255 and palm portion 290 that correspond to the same components in the first embodiment disc invention 100. The strap 300 has one exterior end 310 having hook and loop fasteners 315 on one side and a second end 320 attached to and exterior ridge 280 of the disc invention 200, and hook and loop fastener surface 325 over a portion of the ridge edges 280, 210 of the disc invention. After inserting the fingers in the manner previously described in reference to FIGS. 1-3, the strap is wrapped about the exterior of the disc and attached with the hook and loop fastener positions 315, 325 closing off the exterior outer ends of the cut slots 215, 225, 235, 245, 255 further locking the fingers to the disc invention 200.

While the preferred embodiment describes the compressible material as being formed from plastic type foam, the invention can be used with other compressible and expandable materials such as rubber, sponge materials, and the like.

Although, hook and loop fasteners are described, the strap can include other types of conventional fasteners such as snaps, Velcro and the like.

While the preferred embodiment shows a disc shape, the invention can encompass other shapes such as triangular, rectangular, octagon, hexagon, and the like.

While the invention has been described, disclosed, illustrated and shown in various terms of certain embodiments or modifications which it ha presumed in practice, the cope of the invention is not intended to be, nor should it be deemed to be, limited thereby and such other modifications or embodiments as may be suggested by the teaching herein are particularly reserved especially as they fall within the breadth and scope of the claims here appended.