PSY/345 – Sensation and Perception
May 2, 2016
The sense taste and the sense of smell are more complex then you could imagine. It is more than just breathing in air and putting food or drink in your mouth. It is complex system that involves the brain, nerve cells, memories, and chemicals. Combining these things makes the world around us have more meaning. Our brain is the main component but it cannot do all the work alone.
To understand how taste and smell work together, you first need to understand how each work as an individual sense. The sense of taste uses our tongue. Without tongue we are able to taste just four flavors using our taste buds that are located on our tongue. Our tongue contains nerve cells that send messages to our brain. There are proteins that activate the sensory cell which activates the nerve cells. The nerve cells pass the information of a perception of flavor to the brain. There are numerous wart-like bumps on the mucous membrane of the tongue where substance producing the taste is transformed into a nerve signal and the bumps are called papillae. The papillae contain several taste buds and they increase the surface of the tongue so we can perceive taste more intensely. The papillae contain the sensory cells and the middle of the tops side has a small indentation that is filled with fluid. The chemicals responsible for taste are washed thru the hollow area where as much substance that can be detected by the taste buds are sensed before being swallowed ("How Does Our Sense Of Taste Work?", 2012).
As for the taste buds, they are located in the walls of the papillae and the sensory cells that are in the taste buds are renewed once a week. Taste buds are on the tongue but there are other cells that can detect taste and they are located in the throat, epiglottis, the nasal cavity and the upper part of the esophagus. The perception of taste is transferred to...