10 Bizarre Facts You Didn’t Know About Human Bones!
Our skeleton helps us stand, supports our bodies and needs to stay healthy to avoid fractures and keep good posture. But, did you know that the number of bones in your body changes after birth? That some move 5 million times per year? How about the human neck versus the giraffe’s — think the two don’t have anything in common? Think again! Where is your funny bone exactly and why does it feel (not so) funny when you hit it?
It may not surprise you that your thigh bone (femur) is the longest bone in your body, but did you know that it’s also the heaviest? The femur is stronger than concrete. And although rare, if it is fractured, this is usually because of the angle of the impact.
Although your fingers have no muscles in them, your hands have 27 bones, 29 joints and 123 ligaments to make them work together.
Your face has 14 bones, which provide a house for your brain and protect the sense organs of sight, taste and smell. Also, facial bones continue to move throughout your life, one reason that faces grow “sunken” as they age.
The smallest bone in your body — the stapes (also called the stirrup bone) — is located in your inner ear. It’s 1/10 of an inch! This tiny bone has a big job though. A key player with the sound vibrations as they enter the ear, the stapes acts like a tuning fork.
Just Like New
We’ve all heard that organs rejuvenate themselves every so many years, but did you know that your bones cannot only repair themselves, but also re-grow? Our bones are constantly worn down and remade so that every seven years, we have new bones — a new skeleton!
Where Did Your Bones Go?
Although you are born with 300 bones at birth, you end up with 206 as an adult after many fuse together. A quarter of these are in your feet!
Your ribs move 5 million times a year due to breathing. And although strong enough to protect two of your most important organs – the heart and lungs – ribs can be damaged from a strong sneeze!
What do you have in common with a giraffe? You have the same number of bones in your neck (theirs are just much longer).
The One You’re Born Without
Your thigh might have the largest bone, but your knee has the largest joint in your body. Also, babies are born without knee bones (the patella), as it doesn’t develop until ages 2-5.
What’s So Funny?
It doesn’t feel very funny when you hit your funny bone. In fact, your funny bone is not actually a bone, but the ulnar nerve which controls the feeling in the pinky and ring finger. It travels from the neck, down the arm, and wraps around the elbow where it is particularly close to the skin’s surface. And that’s what creates that weird sensation when it’s hit.