The tongue is the only muscle which isn”t joint to the bone at both ends, and it is quite uncommon in that aspect. It is connected to the hyoid bone on one end, which is unique too, as it is the only bone which is not joint to another bone in the human body.
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3D medical animation still showing Tongue Papillae
Functions of the tongue:
The tongue”s main physiological function are:
Tasting (gustatory sensation)
Chewing (aiding in mastication)
It comprises of various individual muscles that help in positioning it while there is activity involved of chewing or speaking.
The upper “skin” surface of it has the taste buds. There are approximately 2,000 to 8,000 taste buds found on an average human tongue. Papillae (small nipple-like projections) surface, which is easily noticeable, is covered by the taste buds.
Conditions of the Tongue:
There are a various conditions that can easily form on the tongue.
They include some of the issues listed below:
Damage of the nerve that affects the movement of the tongue. This may result in difficulty with chewing and speaking
Thursh (Candidiasis) is a condition in which a yeast grows over the tongue’s surface. Thrush can occur to almost anyone, however it is often found in cases of very young or elderly people who are either taking steroids or have suppressed immune systems
Taste related abnormalities may happen due to infections or injuries (such as burns) in any of the damaged taste buds
Pain in it may occur due to mouth ulcers, anemia, or mouth cancer in some cases
Hairy Tongue condition which is when Papillae can overgrow the surface of the tongue, result in an appearance that is white or black.
Herpes Stomatitis is a condition in which the herpes virus could cause cold sores on it. This is quite uncommon though.
Lichen planus is a condition in which the mouth or skin may be affected. It may be caused by our immune system hurting lining of the mouth and the skin, however, exact cause is not well known.
Disclaimer: The information in no way constitutes, or should be construed as medical advice. Nor is the above article an endorsement of any research findings discussed in the article an endorsement for any of the source publications.
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