How The Nose Works
nose on your face is just the tip of an iceberg. The important
functions- breathing and smelling-actually happen mostly inside
your head, in your nasal cavity. The air inhaled through your
nostrils travels to this cavity on its way
cavity cleans and conditions the air. Pollutants, viruses and
bacteria are trapped in mucus, which then travels to the
stomach, where stomach acid neutralizes the germs.
structures on the sides of the cavity, called the turbinates,
humidify the air.
time air reaches the lungs, it's almost completely saturated
with water vapor.
vapor is essential for proper function of the lungs.
crucial that air reaching the lungs be neither too cold nor too
scientists understand the nose and breathing, its ability to
smell remains somewhat mysterious. At the rear of the nasal
cavity, behind and just above the bridge of the nose, is the
olfactory epithelium-the “smelling skin" made of cells that
react to chemicals.
molecule of a substance hits one of these receptor cells, a
nerve impulse is sent to the brain. The impulse-not the
smell-travels through the brain for decoding, crossing
the area concerned with memory, emotion and motivated behavior.
That's why the smell of popcorn may also trigger memories
of a favorite movie.
as your nose is working, the best advice is to leave well enough
alone. But if you have a lot of nosebleeds and allergies or if
you suddenly can’t smell, you should consult