What is the Function of the Nervous System

The function of the nervous system is essential to keep the human body healthy. The human body is composed of several systems that are needed in order to live. All of them have several important functions and living without them would be impossible. Respiratory, digestive, endocrine, muscular, skeletal, cardiovascular and nervous are just some of the systems that are part of your body.

The nervous system can easily be the most complex of all systems. It controls the whole body and is responsible for all automatic functions of the body. The system is very delicate and can be affected by many health problems like multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy and strokes.

In order to understand the function of the nervous system is necessary to know its composition. The nervous system is composed of special cells known as neurons. These neurons consist of a cell body and the nerves processes. The body of a neuron is quite similar to the ones of other cells. The processes are projections that extend from the cell. These projections are the ones that carry and transmit signals. There are billions of neurons in the body and they are very well organized.
The nervous system is composed of several parts: the central nervous system consists of the brain and the spinal cord and the peripheral system consisting of nerve tissue spread through several parts of the body.

The brain uses the neurons to communicate with the whole body.

Any information perceived by the senses goes immediately to the brain. The brain interprets the data received and sends any necessary message to the body. The spinal cord is similar to a bridge. The messages sent by the brain travel through the spinal cord and are able to reach many parts of the body like the arms and legs.

The peripheral system can also be divided into the autonomic and somatic system.

The autonomic system controls all the processes that do not require actual thinking. Breathing, digestion, pulse, blood pressure and regulation of temperature are some examples of the processes controlled by this system. This system can be subdivided into other divisions: the sympathetic and parasympathetic.

The sympathetic division triggers when physical activity increases.

There is an increment in heart rate and respiration which is a function of the nervous system. The parasympathetic division does the complete opposite of the sympathetic. The lack of physical activity will lead to a decrease in the heart rate and the respiration. These impulses slow down as the body rests.


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