Monday, November 16, 2015

A Multitude of Senses

image source
How many senses do you have?  5?  6?  Or would you say a person has more?
You might be surprised to find out that humans are believed to have as many as 21 senses and possibly even more! 

Many of the senses which we already are aware of - sight, taste, touch are composed of more than one sense. With sight, we are able to perceive both color and brightness. Taste enables us to discern between sweet, salty, sour, bitter and umami (savory-ness). 

With our sense of touch we are able to tell temperature, pressure, pain and itchiness. But touch can be broken down even further. Pain can be felt in various ways - skin, bones/joints, and body organs. Itchiness is its our sense and pressure can be felt as a light touch or as something heavy.

Then there is our sense of hunger, thirst, equilibrium, time, smell, and sound.  And not to be left out is the sense of Proprioception (spatial awareness) or rather 'where our body parts are at any given time'.

A new, and some what controversial, theory is that hair is also part of our senses. It is believed that long hair is an extension of the nervous system and enables a person to be more aware of and better sense their environment. Native Americans have always been considered masters at tracking and discerning the environment around them. When these expert trackers enlisted in the US Army, their hair was cut and they lost their keen abilities. 

One of the most intriguing senses is Magnetoception or the ability to detect magnetic fields. This sense is highly developed in most animals since this is how they are able to follow their migratory routes. 

While most humans have varying degrees of development of the various senses, some have never developed their 'sense of humor' or  'common sense'. 

Click here to learn more!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015