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How many bones are there in the human body?

Each human being does not have the same number of bones at birth and in adulthood. How many bones do we have exactly?

Discover in this file all you need to know about the bones of the human body, from their distribution on the body to their number per part.

The skeleton of an adult has 206 distinct bones.

How many bones does the human body have?

As a reminder, bones form our skeleton. Therefore, determining the number of bones in the human body is equivalent to determining the number of bones that make up a human skeleton.

The skeleton of an adult has 206 distinct bones classified into two systems: the axial skeleton and the appendicular skeleton.

In short, there are 26 bones that make up the spine, 8 in the skull, 14 in the face, 8 other cranial bones, 25 in the sternum and ribs, a total of 64 bones in the upper limbs and 62 in the lower limbs . But if we go into a little more detail, will you still be up for it?

How are bones distributed in the human body?

As we have just seen, the bones of the human body are divided into two groups. First, there are the bones of the axial skeleton and then those of appendicular skeleton. Let’s see what these are made of!

The axial skeleton

This part of the skeleton mainly includes the bones of the head, but also bones of the trunk. It can be considered as the real framework of the human body.

The axial skeleton and its number of bones

1 – The head

The 28 head bones include those of the human skull, those of the face in addition to those of the ears.

  • Skull : it is made up of 8 bones, some of which are duplicated and some of which are not.
  • Duplicate ones: there are two duplicate bones in the skull. These are the parietal bone and the temporal bone. The parietal bone is a lateral part located at the top of the skull. As for the temporal bone, it is found under the parietal bone.
  • Solo ones: there are four solo bones in the skull. First, the frontal bone which is the forehead bone. Then, the occipital bone ending up in the back part of the skull. Then the ethmoid bone which is located in the middle of our orbits. And finally, a bone called the sphenoid bone.
  • The face consists of 14 bones including 2 single bones and 6 double bones.
  • Ears are composed of 6 bones with 3 ossicles each (the hammer, the anvil and the stirrup). These are the smallest bones in the human body. Their role is to receive sound waves, amplify them and then transmit the sounds to the liquid contained in the inner ear.
The skull and its number of bones

2 – The trunk

The trunk is made up of the 52 bones of the neck, thorax, abdomen and pelvis.

  • The neck is made up of 8 bones. One of these bones is the larynx bone. The other seven bones are vertebrae, in other words, spinal bones.
  • The thorax is made up of 37 bones, including 12 vertebrae, the 24 rib bones and finally a bone called the sternum.
  • The abdomen is made up of 5 bones which are all vertebrae.
  • The Pelvis is made up of 2 bones that make up the last two bones of the spine. These are the sacrum and the coccyx.

The appendicular skeleton

This last part of the skeleton concerns the bones forming the belts, as well as the bones of the limbs.

The bones of the appendicular skeleton and its number of bones

1 – Members

To be able to move, the human being must mobilize his limbs. These are classified into two categories: upper members and the legs.

Upper limbs broadly includes the arms, forearms, wrists and hands.

  • Arms consist of 2 bones, one each. This bone is called the humerus.
  • The forearms consist of 4 bones with two bones per forearm. These are the radius and the ulna.
  • The wrists together make 16 bones, so each wrist contains eight.
  • Each hand is made up of twenty-two bones, making a total of 44 bones for all of the two hands.

The lower limbs concern the other limbs, in particular the thighs, legs and feet.

  • Thighs are made up of 4 bones, two each.
  • Legs : each leg has two bones. This makes a set of 4 bones for the set of legs.
  • The feet : each foot has twenty-eight bones. The feet therefore have between them 56 bones.

2 – Belts

In anatomy, a belt is a bone system which joins the limbs to the vertebral column. Mention may in particular be made of the shoulder girdle and the pelvic girdle.

  • The shoulder girdle: it connects the bones of the arm to the spine. It is made up of 5 bones including the shoulder blades and clavicles.
  • The pelvic belt: it connects the bones of the lower limbs to the spine. It is made up of three bones, including the pubis.

Good to know : osteology is the science that studies the anatomy of bones. Since man has been interested in his bones, their shapes, their number and their roles, this science has continued to evolve. It is normal today that everyone wants to know more about these elements that are an integral part of our body.

Special cases

The number of bones in the human body is very relative. It is true that this number varies between 206 and 224 in adulthood, but these are not fixed values. For example, at birth, a baby has about 350 bones. Over time, some of these bones join together to form a single bone. It is all these fusions that take place until adulthood that cause the initial number of bones to vary. Because of this, it is not possible to say exactly how many bones a teenager has. It is also necessary to take into account the case malformations. Some have more or fewer bones than others. Thus, it is difficult to determine with certainty the number of bones contained in the human body.

What are the 4 types of bones in the human body?

We can count 4 bone shapes in the human body. Each of them meets a specific need. We can thus cite:

  • The long bones: humerus, ulna, radius, femur, tibia, fibula, phalanges, etc.
  • Short bones: the tarsus (ankle), carpus (wrist), etc.
  • Flat bones: shoulder blades, skull bones, rib cage bones, sternum, etc.
  • Irregular bones: vertebrae, iliac bones, sacrum, coccyx, mandibles, etc.

SEE ALSO: How much blood is in the human body?

How to take care of your bones?

Taking care of your bones involves moving, eating well and exposing yourself to the sun frequently. But food is one of the most important criteria!

  • Fruits and vegetables : very rich in minerals and potassium, they limit the loss of minerals from the bones.
  • Antioxidants: very rich in calcium (soya, spinach, watercress, white beans) they promote the renewal of bone mass.
  • Cold sea fish: these are very fatty fish, rich in vitamin D and fat-soluble (salmon, herring, sardines, etc.)
  • Foods rich in vitamin D: fatty fish, egg yolks, oysters, dairy products, cod liver oil, etc.
  • Olive oil : very rich in oleic acid or omega-9, olive oil greatly strengthens bone density.
  • Green tea: it fights against demineralization and acidity in the body, just like sencha tea from Japan.
  • Honey : it is very rich in phosphorus and especially in calcium, it is very good for health in general!
  • Spirulina: very rich in amino acids, iron, vitamins and minerals, a cure of 1 g of spirulina per day for 3 months would also be beneficial for our bones.
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