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Brain structures: All you need to know

aThe dom­i­nant struc­ture of the human brain is called the cere­brum, which con­sists of the grey, curly cor­tex. The cere­brum is divid­ed into two hemi­spheres (right and left), each con­sist­ing of four lobes, and con­trols high­er men­tal func­tions. As you can see in Fig­ure 1, the four lobes of the brain are the occip­i­tal, tem­po­ral, pari­etal and frontal lobes.

cotex

Fig­ure 1

The cor­tex con­sists of two hemi­spheres, each divid­ed into four lobes: frontal, pari­etal, occip­i­tal and tem­po­ral.

The cor­tex includes a num­ber of neu­rons or brain cells (see Fig­ure 2). These neu­rons com­mu­ni­cate through con­nec­tion, called synaps­es. An aver­age brain con­tains approx­i­mate­ly 100 bil­lions neu­rons. But oth­er types of cells, called glial cells, also play an impor­tant role.

neuron

Fig­ure 2

This is a neu­ron. Your brain con­tains approx­i­mate­ly 100 bil­lions of these. Neu­rons com­mu­ni­cate through synaps­es.

Dif­fer­ent areas of the brain are respon­si­ble for dif­fer­ent func­tions.

The frontal lobes (behind the fore­head) are pri­mar­i­ly respon­si­ble for deci­sion-mak­ing, plan­ning, prob­lem-solv­ing, and cer­tain forms of atten­tion. They are also involved in motor con­trol, cer­tain aspects of lan­guage and mem­o­ry, social behav­ior and emo­tions.

  • The occip­i­tal lobes (at the back of the brain) are devot­ed to vision.
  • The tem­po­ral lobes (next to the tem­ples) are respon­si­ble most­ly for mem­o­ry for­ma­tion, lan­guage, hear­ing and object per­cep­tion.
  • The pari­etal lobes are respon­si­ble most­ly for cer­tain forms of atten­tion, spa­tial pro­cess­ing and the manip­u­la­tion of objects.

To go fur­ther and learn more:

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As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters, and more, SharpBrains is an independent market research firm and think tank tracking health and performance applications of brain science.