Chapters

Digestive system

It is a system which converts the food into Nutrients and Energy with the help of a group of organ. This energy is used to perform various works for the body.

Group of organs in Digestive system are:-

  1. MOUTH
  2. THROAT
  3. ESOPHAGUS
  4. STOMACH
  5. SMALL INTESTINE
  6. LARGE INTESTINE
  7. RECTUM
  8. ANUS

MOUTH

Mouth is also called Oral Cavity, or Buccal Cavity. The mouth opens to the outside at the lips and empties into the throat at the rear its boundaries are defined by the lips, cheeks, hard and soft palates, and glottis. It has 2 sections:

  1. The vestibule, the area between the cheeks and the teeth, and the oral cavity proper.
  2. The latter section is mostly filled by the tongue and salivary glands.

Teeth chop food into small pieces, which are moistened by saliva before the tongue and other muscles push the food into the pharynx. Constituents of mouth are:

  1. Teeth: The teeth are 32 small, hard organs found along the anterior and lateral edges of the mouth. Each tooth is made of a bone-like substance called dentin
  2. Tongue: The tongue is located on the inferior portion of the mouth just back and medial to the teeth. It is a small organ made up of several pairs of muscles covered in a thin skin-like layer. The outside of the tongue contains many rough papillae for gripping food as it is moved by the tongue’s muscles. The taste buds on the surface of the tongue detect taste molecules in food and connect to nerves in the tongue to send taste information to the brain. The tongue also helps to push food toward the posterior part of the mouth for swallowing.
  3. Salivary Glands: Surrounding the mouth are 3 sets of salivary glands. The salivary glands are accessory organs that produce a watery secretion known as saliva. 

THROAT

Throat is also called the pharynx, the throat is the next destination for food you've eaten. From here, food travels to the esophagus or swallowing tube.

ESOPHAGUS

The esophagus is a muscular tube connecting the pharynx to the stomach. It carries swallowed masses of chewed food along its length. At the inferior end of the esophagus is a muscular ring called the lower esophageal sphincter or cardiac sphincter. The function of this sphincter is to close of the end of the esophagus and trap food in the stomach.

STOMACH

The stomach stores swallowed food and liquid, mixes the food and liquid with digestive juice it produces, and slowly empties its contents, called chyme, into the small intestine. The muscle of the upper part of the stomach relaxes to accept large volumes of swallowed material from the esophagus. The muscle of the lower part of the stomach mixes the food and liquid with digestive juice.

SMALL INTESTINE

The small intestine is a long, thin tube about 1 inch in diameter and about 10 feet long that is part of the lower gastrointestinal tract. It is located just inferior to the stomach and takes up most of the space in the abdominal cavity. The entire small intestine is coiled like a hose and the inside surface is full of many ridges and folds. These folds are used to maximize the digestion of food and absorption of nutrients. By the time food leaves the small intestine, around 90% of all nutrients have been extracted from the food that entered it. 

It is made up of three segments, the duodenum, jejunum, and ileum, the small intestine is a long tube loosely coiled in the abdomen (spread out, it would be more than 20 feet long). The small intestine continues the process of breaking down food by using enzymes released by the pancreas and bile from the liver. Bile is a compound that aids in the digestion of fat and eliminates waste products from the blood. Peristalsis is also at work in this organ, moving food through and mixing it up with digestive secretions. The duodenum is largely responsible for continuing the process of breaking down food, with the jejunum and ileum being mainly responsible for the absorption of nutrients into the bloodstream.

LARGE INTESTINE

Large intestine also known as COLON, the waste products of the digestive process include undigested parts of food and older cells from the GI tract lining. Muscles push these waste products into the large intestine. The large intestine absorbs water and any remaining nutrients and changes the waste from liquid into stool.

RECTUM

The rectum (Latin for "straight") is an 8-inch chamber that connects the colon to the anus. It is the rectum's job to receive stool from the colon and to hold the stool until evacuation happens. When anything (gas or stool) comes into the rectum, sensors send a message to the brain. The brain then decides if the rectal contents can be released or not. If they can, the sphincters (muscles) relax and the rectum contracts, expelling its contents. If the contents cannot be expelled, the sphincters contract and the rectum accommodates, so that the sensation temporarily goes away.

ANUS

The anus is the last part of the digestive tract. It consists of the pelvic floor muscles and the two anal sphincters (internal and external muscles). The lining of the upper anus is specialized to detect rectal contents. It lets us know whether the contents are liquid, gas, or solid. The pelvic floor muscle creates an angle between the rectum and the anus that stops stool from coming out when it is not supposed to. The anal sphincters provide fine control of stool. The internal sphincter keeps us from going to the bathroom when we are asleep, or otherwise unaware of the presence of stool. When we get an urge to go to the bathroom, we rely on our external sphincter to keep the stool in until we can get to the toilet.


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