US 3587590 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Elizabeth G. Hastings P. O. Box 514, Half Moon Bay, Calif. 94019 [2| 1 Appl. No. 749,508
 Filed Aug. 1, 1968  Patented June 28, 197!  Inventor  DEVICE FOR DISCOURAGING SMOKING AND oven-sumo lChhn,'lDrlwingFigs.
521 11.8. 128/359 511 1m. A6ljl7/00 [so FieldofSear-ch 128/359,
208, l; 131/], l4; 24/90 (TA) Primary Examiner Dalton L. Truluck Attomey-Alexander B. Blair ABSTRACT: A buttonlike device formed of an inert, nontoxic material and preferably possessing a slight degree of resilien cy, may be formed of any suitable material such as neoprene. The device is held in the mouth and the user manipulates the device, moving it around in the mouth as would be done, for example, in the case of a hard candy mint. The user will subconsciously also bite the device from time to time and the making of the device of a material possessing some degree of resiliency prevents it from harming the tooth enamel. This supplies a need for occupying the tongue and teeth and tends to satisfy a craving, for example, for cigarettes and assists the user in reducing the number of cigarettes smoked or completely overcoming the smoking habit. The same theoryapplies for people who are on diets and are endeavoring to reduce the food intake.
DEVICE FOR DISCOURAGING SMOKING AND OVER- EATING SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The invention, involves both a method and a device, the method being involved in occupying the users attention, consciously or subconsciously, by providing an item in the mouth which can be moved around and turned over repeatedly by the tongue and even chewed, the theory of the device being that smoking is to a considerable extent a mechanical habit giving the smoker something to do with his hands and lips.
The device itself comprises a disclike element formed of a nontoxic material which is completely inert in the presence of V saliva, thus being completely harmless in use. The device is relatively small, preferably about three-sixteenth inch thick and five-eights inch in diameter, thus approximating the size of hard mint or similar candies. The device is preferably circular with a rounded smooth edge to prevent any abrasive action in the mouth and it may be provided with openings and one or more grooves which the user will subconsciously seek out with his tongue in moving the device about in his mouth. The exact location of the openings or grooves is of no importance, but it is important that the device have a rounded edge throughout its circumference so that it can be safely moved about in the mouth without any abrasive action.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING FIG. 1 is a plan view of the device, somewhat enlarged,
FIG. 2 is a similar view greatly enlarged;
FIG. 3 is an edge view of the device;
FIG. 4 is a back face view;
FIG. 5 is a section on line 5-5 of FIG. 2;
FIG. 6 is a similar view on line 6-6 of FIG. 2; and
FIG. 7 is a still further enlarged fragmentary view illustrating the deformability of the device when gripped between the teeth.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT Referring to the drawing, the numeral 10 designates the device as a whole. The device is preferably, but not necessarily, circular as in the case of a circular hard candy mint. The back face 12 (FIG. 4) is preferably flat and smooth, except for the provision of openings to be described, and such back surface flows smoothly into the rounded edge of the device, such rounded edge at the top of the device extending downwardly thereinto to smoothly connect with the top surface 16, which is accordingly recessed below the plane of the top limit of the device.
The surface continuity of the body of the device within the curved rim 14 may be disturbed in any suitable manner and it has been found advisable to provide such body of the device with one or more openings 18 therethrough. Between such openings the 'top surface may be grooved, as at 20, and the top edges of the grooves are joined to the top surface 16 by filleted edges 22. The top and bottom extremities of the openings 18 also may have filleted connection as at 24 with the bottom and top faces 12 and 16.
As stated, the body is formed of an inert, nontoxic material and one of such materials is neoprene, although other forms of plastic or somewhat resilient material may be used. It has been found that by holding the device in the mouth for the purpose stated, the user may occasionally bite down on the device in which case it will be deformed by the teeth 26 (FIG. 7), as indicated at 28. Thus, damage to the tooth channel is prevented.
The method involved comprises'the formation of a smoothedged, relatively small article of an inert, nontoxic material, and holding the article in the mouth where it is subject to movement from side to side of the mouth and being turned over from time to time by the tongue, thus consciously or subconsciously occupying the attention of the tongue and teeth to limit or substitute for a craving for cigarettes. Moreover, a user, on a diet and attempting to limit his food intake, may
similarly1occup his attention with the present device, tending to take IS mm off of food and thus assisting him in reducing by a new sterile device. It is important that the device have a smoothed edge entirely surrounding it to reduce any possibility of abrading any portion of the mouth, and the material used should be completely inert in the presence of saliva and, of course, nontoxic. A device in circular form has been found most satisfactory, but it will be apparent that the device in plan may be of other shapes, such as oval, square, with rounded corners, etc. It is also preferred that the continuity of the top and bottom surfaces be disturbed, for example, by the provision of the openings 18 and grooves 20, since the user will subconsciously seek out these portions of the device with his tongue, thus helping to satisfy the craving for something to do with the mouth to take the mind off of cigarettes or food.
From the foregoing it will now be seen that there is herein provided an improved Method and Device for Discouraging Smoking and Over-eating which accomplishes all of the objects of this invention and others, including many advantages of great practical utility and commercial importance.
As various embodiments may be made of this inventive con cept, and as many modifications may be made in the embodiment hereinbefore shown and described, it is to be understood that all matter herein is to be interpreted merely as illustrative, and not in a limiting sense.
1. An oral substitute, comprising an inert, nontoxic resilient device having a curved, smooth edge throughout for total insertion within ones mouth without risk of poisoning and damage to teeth and gums, a completely smooth, flat bottom surface on one side thereof for maximum contact with the surface of the tongue and cheek in the alternative without any abrasive action, and a smooth, flat top surface completely recessed below the top of said curved edge having exclusively at least one hole and a groove therein which will cause the user consciously or subconsciously to seek out such portions of the device with his tongue to occupy his attention, the total insertion of said device in the mouth for sucking, chewing, and titillating safely serving as a smoking and eating substitute.