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7 Interesting Facts about the Spine

Besides performing the routine job of providing support to your body, your spinal cord has many interesting facts associated with it which a lot of us know not of.

Pain By Vasudha Bhat / Apr 29, 2015

Your Spine is your Lifeline

Your spine is the lifeline of your body. Not only does it support the entire structure but it also has the responsibility of carrying more than a million nerve messages from the brain to the rest of the body. This magical part of your body also has some very interesting facts on itself.

82 Percent of Spinal Injury Sufferers are Male

Although the reason behind this still baffles experts, theory still shows that men are at a higher risk of spinal injuries than women. From motor vehicle crashes to adventure sport falls, causes of spinal injuries in men are many.

Humans and Giraffes have 7 Cervical Vertebrae

The cervical vertebrae are located immediately below the skull. Surprisingly, both humans and tall and long-necked giraffes have the same number of cervical vertebrae in their body.

Your Spinal Cord is Much More Flexible than you Think

Most of us think that our spinal cord is only designed to bend forward. But the fact is that it is so flexible that if it were to be separated from the body and bent, it would form two thirds of a circle.

Astronauts returning from Space are 3 Percent Taller

Astronauts who return from space tend to be 3 percent taller than their original height. They gain approximately two inches of height because their cartilage discs expand in microgravity.

Cervical Vertebrae are also Referred to as Atlas

This is because your spine carries the burden of your neck and head and supports the entire body, just like a character in Greek mythology named Atlas, who carried the burden of the world on his shoulder.

A Baby’s Spine Consists of 33 Individual Vertebrae

As our body grows, some of the vertebrae start fusing together. There are five vertebrae which together form the sacrum. But as we grow, it becomes a single bone. The coccygeal vertebrae, which can vary from three to five bones, fuses to become one bone and this is how the tailbone forms.

Motor Accidents are a Leading Cause of Spinal Injuries

The most common cause of spinal cord injuries is motor accidents. While over 35 percent of spinal cord injuries are caused by on-road accidents, spinal injuries after the age of 65 are mostly a result of falls.

Image source: Getty Images


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