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Chapter 6. Section 4: Other Senses. Taste: Savory Sensations. Taste occurs because chemicals stimulate thousands of receptors in the mouth, primarily on the tongue, but also in the throat, cheeks, & roof of mouth. Papillae: Knoblike elevations on the tongue, containing the taste buds.

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chapter 6

Chapter 6

Section 4: Other Senses

taste savory sensations
Taste: Savory Sensations
  • Taste occurs because chemicals stimulate thousands of receptors in the mouth, primarily on the tongue, but also in the throat, cheeks, & roof of mouth

Actual receptors for taste are inside the taste buds

    • Cells send tiny fibers out through an opening in the bud
    • Receptor cells are replaced by new cells every ten days
    • After 40, total number of taste buds declines

Bitterness & sourness help us identify foods that are rancid or poisonous

  • Sweetness helps us identify foods that are healthful or rich in calories
  • Salt is necessary for all bodily functions

Basic tastes can be perceived at any spot on the tongue

    • Center has no taste buds
  • Taste differences are genetic, a matter of culture & learning
  • Attractiveness of a food can also be affected by its color, temperature, texture, & odor
smell the sense of scents
Smell: The Sense of Scents
  • Smell or olfaction

Airborne chemical molecules enter the nose & circulate through the nasal cavity.

    • Vapors can also enter through the mouth & pass into nasal cavity.

Sniff out dangers by smelling smoke, food spoilage, & poisonous gases

    • Loss can be caused by infection, disease, injury, or smoking

Red bars show the people who could identify a substance dropped on the tongue when they were able to smell it

  • Blue bars show the people who could identify the substance when they were not able to smell it
senses of the skin
Senses of the Skin
  • Protects our innards, helps identify objects, establish intimacy with others, gives us a sense of ourselves as a distinct from the environment
  • Basic senses- touch/pressure, warmth, cold, & pain
    • Tickle, itch, & burning
the mystery of pain
The Mystery of Pain
  • When the stimulus producing it is removed, the sensation may continue, sometimes for years
  • Chronic pain disrupts lives, puts stress on the body, & causes depression, & despair
the gate control theory of pain
The Gate Control Theory of Pain
  • Experience of pain depends (in part) on whether the pain impulse gets past neurological “gate” in the spinal cord & thus reaches the brain.

Brain influences the gate

    • Thoughts & feelings can influence our reactions to pain
updating the gate control theory
Updating the Gate Control Theory
  • Doesn’t explain phantom pain
  • Brain not only responds to incoming signals from sensory nerves but is also capable of generating pain entirely on its own
    • A network of neurons in the brain gives us a sense of our own bodies & body parts
neuromatrix theory of pain
Neuromatrix Theory of Pain
  • Theory that the matrix of neurons in the brain is capable of generating pain (& other sensations) in the absence of signals from sensory nerves
the environment within
The Environment Within
  • Kinesthesis: The sense of body position and movement of body parts
    • Information provided by pain & pressure receptors located in muscles, joints, & tendons

Equilibrium: The sense of balance

    • Gives us information about our bodies as a whole
    • Relies on three semicircular canals in the inner ear
      • Tubes are filled with fluid that moves & presses on hair like receptors whenever the head rotates