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A headboard is the portion of a bed that is located at the end where one rests his or her head while sleeping. Usually, it is attached to the frame of the bed, but in some cases, it may simply rest behind the bed.
The primary purpose of the headboard is to help keep pillows in place while the bed is in use. It can, however, serve several additional purposes. For example, a headboard may include shelves that can be used to place decorations or lamps to use while reading in bed. Similarly, it may incorporate cabinetry and other storage areas. This style became particularly popular with the introduction of the waterbed to the public.
The headboard may also be an integral part of the bedroom décor. Often, the bed frame is designed to match the dressers and nightstands in a bedroom. Available in a wide variety of colors, shapes, and designs, one can be found to fit nearly every homeowner's personal taste.
A headboard may also have a matching footboard, which is located at the opposite end of the bed. Its purpose is to help hold blankets and sheets in place, as well as to add to the decorative element of the bed in the bedroom. Usually, the headboard stands taller than the footboard if both are attached to a bed, although in some cases, they may be of equal height and size. Rarely is the footboard taller.
While a headboard and a footboard are not necessary pieces of a bed, they can both be useful. In addition, both can help transform a plain and ordinary bed to the centerpiece of a bedroom.
In addition to being used in the home, a headboard is often included with hospital beds as well. In this case, it serves as an area to store vital medical materials that need to be accessed easily. It may also serve as a storage area for hygiene products or items nurses may need to access easily when cleaning the room, such as extra linens for the bed or napkins and other items the patient may need.