Which Part Of The Brain Keeps You Breathing
Breathing helps us to absorb oxygen from our atmosphere, and that oxygen plays a huge role in turning food into energy our body requires.
It also allows us to get rid of the carbon dioxide the respiration process generates.
The medulla oblongata is able to precisely detect the exact amount of oxygen and carbon dioxide within our system. Depending on this ratio, it signals the heart and the diaphragm with instructions on how to work.
The greater the level of strength we need to complete a task, the more oxygen we need. Therefore, both the respiratory and the cardiovascular system need to work harder to provide us with the amount of oxygen we need to produce energy and get rid of all the excess carbon dioxide.
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For example, if were working out, were exerting ourselves more than usual. The medulla oblongata notices our bodys need for more oxygen .
So it makes us breathe more heavily to increase oxygen intake. In addition, our heart beats faster so the necessary oxygen can be distributed to the muscles with increased speed.
The increased intake of oxygen helps us deal with the greater generation of carbon dioxide more efficiently as well. Thus, the medulla oblongata keeps the respiratory process balanced: in with the oxygen, out with the carbon dioxide.
Too much of a good thing can be bad for you, as the young people say these days.
What Part Of The Brain Controls Balance
Standing upright, maintaining balance, and walking are all pretty natural processes to us. We dont consciously think about balance during our daily activities.
But have you ever wondered how you manage to stand on one foot? Or perform any sports activity? Or how you dont fall down every time you stumble? Today were going to explore what part of the brain controls balance.
Areas Of The Brain Involved In Movement
-By Timothy Lyons
One of the main areas of the brain involved in movement is known as the primary motor cortex . It is part of the frontal lobe in an area called the precentral gyrus. This area of the brain controls movement in two ways. It is responsible, on one side called the lateral group, for movement of the limbs hands and fingers. Another part of areas of the brain involved in movement is known as the ventromedial group and this area is responsible for automatic and coordinated movement of the limbs such as in posture and locomotion . Each part of the body has its own area in the PMC. They are located somatotopically which means point by point in relation to the body parts .
Another of the areas of the brain involved in movement is composed of three parts. These are known as the secondary motor cortices which are the posterior parietal cortex , the premotor cortex and the supplementary motor area . These have the following functions. The PPC handles translation of visual input into motor commands. The PC handles the sensory guidance of movement such as those associated with time and specific direction . In addition this area is also deals with the mimicking actions of other people and in comprehending and anticipating these actions . The SMA handles arrangement of complex and two-handed movements in regard to coordination.
Neuroplasticity And Movement Rehabilitation
As with other parts of the brain, when neurons of the primary motor cortex are damaged they will never regrow or repair. However, the brain can heal itself and regain some lost function through . This means undamaged parts can change their connections and remap to other areas of the body to take over function, compensating for damaged parts of the motor cortex.
Neuroplasticity is the fundamental principle in physical rehabilitation, such as physiotherapy for patients following stroke, that allows patients to regain motor function and recover. Through neuroplasticity, the more a particular movement is performed, the stronger the brain pathways for that movement become and the easier it gets to perform that movement in the future.
Lets look at an example of a stroke patient, Harry, who has problems with movement in his left leg. Harry might have altered patterns of walking due to damage in the leg area of the motor cortex of the right side of his brain. To help Harry regain efficient walking ability, the physiotherapist helps him perform sequences or patterns of walking by practising activation and control of specific muscle groups in his left leg.
This article was co-written with Zita Arends, who is a physiotherapist in stroke rehabilitation and aged care.
Read other articles in our Brain Control series, .
The Biggest Part: The Cerebrum
The biggest part of the brain is the cerebrum. The cerebrum is the thinking part of the brain and it controls your voluntary muscles the ones that move when you want them to. So you need your cerebrum to dance or kick a soccer ball.
You need your cerebrum to solve math problems, figure out a video game, and draw a picture. Your memory lives in the cerebrum both short-term memory and long-term memory . The cerebrum also helps you reason, like when you figure out that you’d better do your homework now because your mom is taking you to a movie later.
The cerebrum has two halves, with one on either side of the head. Scientists think that the right half helps you think about abstract things like music, colors, and shapes. The left half is said to be more analytical, helping you with math, logic, and speech. Scientists do know for sure that the right half of the cerebrum controls the left side of your body, and the left half controls the right side.
General Sequence Of Voluntary Movement
Visual information is required to locate the target, such as holding a cup with your hand. Then the motor areas of the frontal lobe of the brain plan the range and order the movement.
The vertebral spine carries information to the limb of the body, as towards the hand in this case. Then the motor neurons carry the message to the muscles of the hand and the forearm and take the cup.
The sensory receptors of the fingers send the message that the cup has been grasped towards the sensory cortex. Afterwards, the spinal cord carries this sensory information to the brain.
The basal ganglia judge the grip strength and the cerebellum corrects movement errors. Finally, the sensory cortex receives the message that the cup has been grabbed.
Part Of The Brain That Controls Muscle Movement
Thanks to our brain we can plan, eat, run and even smile. It is through the complex but fascinating functions of the cerebral motor cortex that we carry out various actions on a daily basis. It is a part of our brain that helps us control, execute, and plan movement.
In addition, it allows us to react to stimuli, which is essential for our survival. But this part of our brain does not act alone. These movements can happen thanks to the various connections and association with other areas of our body.
Through the article we will talk about the Part of the brain that controls muscle movement, we will see: what is its location and what are its structures and functions. In addition to associated pathologies when there is an injury or when it does not work properly. Lets explore the motor cortex, also called the motor cortex.
The Functions Of The Cerebellum
Thus, it was considered that the task of the cerebellum was, basically, to make it possible for us to maintain balance, for us to coordinate simple and complex movements and, in general, for the muscles of our body to respond faithfully and effectively to the orders issued by the brain.
For example, one of the main symptoms of changes in the cerebellum was considered to be loss of balance after drinking too much alcohol.
However, in recent years it has been discovered that the idea that the role of the cerebellum has to do with motor coordination is too simplistic. Thus, the cerebellum is not only involved in motor processes, but also plays an important role in many other functions.
The Motor System And Primary Motor Cortex
The brains motor system is contained mostly in the frontal lobes. It starts with premotor areas, for planning and coordinating complex movements, and ends with the primary motor cortex, where the final output is sent down the spinal cord to cause contraction and movement of specific muscles.
The primary motor cortex on the left side of the brain controls movement of the right side of the body, and vice-versa, the right motor cortex controls movement of the left side of the body.
Different areas of the primary motor cortex connect to, and control, movement of different parts of the body, forming a kind of body map known as the .
The size of the area on the homunculus determines the level of fine movement control we have with that part of the body. So, for instance, a large proportion of the motor cortex is devoted to our thumb, fingers, mouth and lips, as they are vital for manipulating objects and speech articulation.
The connection from the primary motor cortex to muscles of the body is so important that any damage leads to an impaired ability to move. If someone suffers a stroke, for instance, that causes damage to the primary motor cortex on one side of their brain, they will develop an impaired ability to move on the opposite side of their body.
The Cerebellum’s Balancing Act
Next up is the cerebellum. The cerebellum is at the back of the brain, below the cerebrum. It’s a lot smaller than the cerebrum. But it’s a very important part of the brain. It controls balance, movement, and coordination .
Because of your cerebellum, you can stand upright, keep your balance, and move around. Think about a surfer riding the waves on his board. What does he need most to stay balanced? The best surfboard? The coolest wetsuit? Nope he needs his cerebellum!
Pituitary Gland Controls Growth
The pituitary gland is very small only about the size of a pea! Its job is to produce and release hormones into your body. If your clothes from last year are too small, it’s because your pituitary gland released special hormones that made you grow. This gland is a big player in too. This is the time when boys’ and girls’ bodies go through major changes as they slowly become men and women, all thanks to hormones released by the pituitary gland.
This little gland also plays a role with lots of other hormones, like ones that control the amount of sugars and water in your body.
Brain And Nervous System
Youre in the middle of a meeting at work, but your mind keeps drifting to the parent-teacher conference you have tonight and the car you have to pick up at the shop on the way home and how you wish you hadnt skipped lunch because the rumbling in your stomach is driving you nuts. Then, suddenly, youre back in the moment, hoping nobody noticed your brief departure.
It may seem as if your brain is always on the go. And it is. The brain not only controls what you think and feel, how you learn and remember, and the way you move and talk, but also many things youre less aware of such as the beating of your heart, the digestion of your food, and yes, even the amount of stress you feel. Like you, your brain is quite the juggler.
Blood Supply To The Brain
Two sets of blood vessels supply blood and oxygen to the brain: the vertebral arteries and the carotid arteries.
The external carotid arteries extend up the sides of your neck, and are where you can feel your pulse when you touch the area with your fingertips. The internal carotid arteries branch into the skull and circulate blood to the front part of the brain.
The vertebral arteries follow the spinal column into the skull, where they join together at the brainstem and form the basilar artery, which supplies blood to the rear portions of the brain.
The circle of Willis, a loop of blood vessels near the bottom of the brain that connects major arteries, circulates blood from the front of the brain to the back and helps the arterial systems communicate with one another.
The Cell Structure Of The Brain
The brain is made up of two types of cells: neurons and glial cells, also known as neuroglia or glia. The neuron is responsible for sending and receiving nerve impulses or signals. Glial cells are non-neuronal cells that provide support and nutrition, maintain homeostasis, form myelin and facilitate signal transmission in the nervous system. In the human brain, glial cells outnumber neurons by about 50 to one. Glial cells are the most common cells found in primary brain tumors.
When a person is diagnosed with a brain tumor, a biopsy may be done, in which tissue is removed from the tumor for identification purposes by a pathologist. Pathologists identify the type of cells that are present in this brain tissue, and brain tumors are named based on this association. The type of brain tumor and cells involved impact patient prognosis and treatment.
What Controls The Bodys Balance
In addition to the cerebellum, two crucial structures in maintaining balance are the inner ear and the vestibular cranial nerves.
Located in the inner ear, the vestibular system provides your brain with the necessary information for motion, head position, and spatial orientation.
It also plays a role in your motor functions that are involved in keeping your balance, stabilizing your head and body during movement, and also helps maintain your posture.
The vestibular system absolutely essential for your bodys equilibrium, thus making it a vital part aiding you in balance.
Damage to any part of the brain related to balance isnt inherently life-threatening, however, it can result in a jerky, and uncoordinated movements if the damage is severe.
The Part Of The Brain Controlling: Balance And Hearing
The processing of sound happens in the temporal lobes which are a part of the cerebrum. The audio stimuli come through the ear and go directly into the primary auditory cortex located in the temporal lobes.
But how does the temporal lobe affect balance?
Have you ever heard a loud noise and found yourself moving away from the source of the noise?
Thats the temporal lobe at work. Your temporal lobe is directly connected to the cerebellum by neural pathways. This connection enables a quick reaction to loud noise.
The Part Of The Brain Controlling: Balance And Posture
As we mentioned earlier, the cerebellum does not work alone. It controls your equilibrium by combining sensory information from the outside world.
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Those pieces of information come from the eyes , ears , and your bodys muscles and joints . After the information is sent to the cerebellum, it processes it and relays the information back to your body instructing it on how to stay balanced during a specific movement.
For example, Consider standing on one foot. Your joints and muscles use receptors, called proprioceptors, to gather information about the spacial position of your body.
These receptors then send the information back to the cerebellum adjusting your position by making you shift body weight, or even stretching your arms out to help maintain your balance.
Now, continue standing on one foot but close your eyes. It is much more difficult to stay in that position, isnt it?
This is because you have limited the information coming to the cerebellum. Its now unable to use visual information from the eyes and has lost a little of the spatial orientation.
Usually, we are not aware of these processes they happen reflexively. But we often become aware of them when we exercise especially exercise that involves a high degree of coordination.
Lobes Of The Brain And What They Control
Each brain hemisphere has four sections, called lobes: frontal, parietal, temporal and occipital. Each lobe controls specific functions.
- Frontal lobe. The largest lobe of the brain, located in the front of the head, the frontal lobe is involved in personality characteristics, decision-making and movement. Recognition of smell usually involves parts of the frontal lobe. The frontal lobe contains Brocas area, which is associated with speech ability.
- Parietal lobe. The middle part of the brain, the parietal lobe helps a person identify objects and understand spatial relationships . The parietal lobe is also involved in interpreting pain and touch in the body. The parietal lobe houses Wernickes area, which helps the brain understand spoken language.
- Occipital lobe. The occipital lobe is the back part of the brain that is involved with vision.
- Temporal lobe. The sides of the brain, temporal lobes are involved in short-term memory, speech, musical rhythm and some degree of smell recognition.
The Cerebrum And Cerebral Cortex
The cerebrum is the largest portion of the brain. It is covered in a thick layer of gray tissue called the cerebral cortex. Interior to the gray matter of the cerebral cortex is the white matter portion of the cerebrum. The white color comes from the layer of insulation called myelin that is on the neurons in this part of the brain.
The cerebrum is divided into two hemispheres that are joined by a band of nerves which allow communication between the two halves. The left hemisphere controls the right side of the body and the right hemisphere controls the left side of the body.
Evolution Of The Motor Cortex
Mammals evolved from mammal-like reptiles over 200 million years ago. These early mammals developed several novel brain functions most likely due to the novel sensory processes that were necessary for the nocturnal niche that these mammals occupied. These animals most likely had a somatomotor cortex, where somatosensory information and motor information were processed in the same cortical region. This allowed for the acquisition of only simple motor skills, such as quadrupedal locomotion and striking of predators or prey. Placental mammals evolved a discrete motor cortex about 100 . According to the principle of proper mass, “the mass of neural tissue controlling a particular function is appropriate to the amount of information processing involved in performing the function.” This suggests that the development of a discrete motor cortex was advantageous for placental mammals, and the motor skills that these organisms acquired were more complex than their early-mammalian ancestors. Further, this motor cortex was necessary for the arboreal lifestyles of our primate ancestors.
Enhancements to the motor cortex were evolutionarily selected to prevent primates from making mistakes in the dangerous motor skill of leaping between tree branches . As a result of this pressure, the motor system of arboreal primates has a disproportionate degree of somatotopic representation of the hands and feet, which is essential for grasping .
What Does The Brain Do
The brain controls what you think and feel, how you learn and remember, and the way you move and talk. But it also controls things you’re less aware of â like the beating of your heart and the digestion of your food.
Think of the brain as a central computer that controls all the body’s functions. The rest of the nervous system is like a network that relays messages back and forth from the brain to different parts of the body. It does this via the spinal cord, which runs from the brain down through the back. It contains threadlike nerves that branch out to every organ and body part.
When a message comes into the brain from anywhere in the body, the brain tells the body how to react. For example, if you touch a hot stove, the nerves in your skin shoot a message of pain to your brain. The brain then sends a message back telling the muscles in your hand to pull away. Luckily, this neurological relay race happens in an instant.
What Are The Parts Of The Brain
Every second of every day the brain is collecting and sending out signals from and to the parts of your body. It keeps everything working even when we are sleeping at night. Here you can take a quick tour of this amazing control center. You can see each part and later learn what are involved with different tasks.
Where Is It Located
The cerebellum is the largest structure of the hindbrain and can be found in the back portion of the skull below the temporal and occipital lobes and behind the brainstem.
When looking at the brain, the cerebellum looks much like a smaller structure separate from the brain, found beneath the hemispheres of the cerebral cortex. The cerebellum consists of a cortex covering white matter, as well as a ventricle filled with fluid. It is also divided into two hemispheres like the cerebral cortex.
There are two main parts of the cerebellum:
- Cerebellar cortex: A layer containing folded tissue containing most of the cerebellum’s neurons
- Cerebellar nuclei: The innermost part of the cerebellum containing nerve cells that communication information from the cerebellum
The cerebellum makes up just 10% of the total volume of the brain, yet it contains an estimated 50% to 80% of the brain’s .
Which Part Of The Brain Controls Visual Reflexes And Eye Movements
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Answer and Explanation: The part of the brain that controls visual and auditory reflexes is the tectum. It is a small structure in the midbrain found just above the brain
Secondly, which part of the brain is responsible for problem solving? The frontal lobe is responsible for initiating and coordinating motor movements; higher cognitive skills, such as problem solving, thinking, planning, and organizing; and for many aspects of personality and emotional makeup. The parietal lobe is involved with sensory processes, attention, and language.
Simply so, what part of the brain is responsible for reaction time?
The brain stem, which consists of the medulla , pons and midbrain . The brain stem controls the reflexes and automatic functions , limb movements and visceral functions .
What part of the brain controls muscle coordination?
The cerebellum is at the back of the brain, below the cerebrum. It’s a lot smaller than the cerebrum. But it’s a very important part of the brain. It controls balance, movement, and coordination .
What Is The Motor Cortex
The motor cortex of the is a region in the posterior part of the frontal lobe that controls voluntary movement. Neurons in this region of the brain send signals down the to the muscles to coordinate movements. The motor cortex is divided into regions that represent the regions of the body, and neurons in each region correspond with the movements in the related part of the body. This area is also involved with learning movements and coordination.
The motor cortex works in harmony with the premotor areas in the frontal cortex to plan out and execute voluntary movement. It is made up of Betz cells, special neurons that send axons down into the spinal cord. These axons communicate with spinal neurons by synaptic transmission. Betz cells are the largest neurons in the central nervous system and project into all the layers of the cortex.
Damage or to the motor cortex can lead to paralysis or difficulty with voluntary motor control. The paralysis will be on the contralateral part of the body, so if the right side of the cortex is damaged, the left side of the body will be affected. Damage to this area can also interfere with the learning of motor skills.