Q:

What is the function of the epiglottis?

A:

Quick Answer

The epiglottis is a flap that attaches to the larynx and protects the glottis, which contains the vocal cords. The epiglottis also contains some taste buds in addition to providing protection.

Know More

Full Answer

The epiglottis is comprised of cartilage and is one of nine cartilage structures contained within the body's larynx. When a person is breathing, the epiglottis will point upward, and when a person is swallowing, the epiglottis will turn horizontally. A person's gag reflex is also thought to stem from the upper part of the epiglottis, which is referred to as the glossopharyngeal nerve. Combined with the vagus nerve, this produces a gag and cough.

Learn More

Related Questions

  • Q:

    In what two systems does the epiglottis function?

    A:

    The epiglottis, a flap composed of elastic cartilage located at the back of the throat, functions in both the respiratory and digestive systems of the body. It is open most of the time to allow air into the trachea, but it closes to prevent food from entering.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the role of the epiglottis?

    A:

    According to MedlinePlus, the epiglottis is a flap of skin that prevents food and drink from going down the windpipe and into the lungs. It's located behind the tongue and in front of the voice box, or larynx.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What are the functions of the Larynx?

    A:

    The three main functions of the larynx are swallowing, talking and breathing. It is usually 2 inches long, and is a member of the respiratory system, being situated between the trachea and pharynx.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Why do men have deeper voices than women?

    A:

    According to Penn State University professor David Puts, men have deeper voices than women because boys experience a rise in testosterone during puberty that makes their vocal cords grow longer and thicker, causing their voices to drop as much as one full octave. Girls experience vocal cord changes during puberty as well, but their voices only deepen slightly compared to boys.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore