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Is there a sixth human body sense and how does it work?
Question Date: 2011-08-31
Answer 1:

It sounds like you know that we have senses like vision, hearing, smell, taste, and touch (with includes feeling heat, pain, pressure, and cold).

There is a sixth sense called prorioception (pro-pree-oh-sep-shun). Its the sense that tells us where the moving parts of our bodies are. You can also add a sense of balance and a sense of direction to the list, making 8 senses.

Close your eyes and touch your nose. This seems pretty easy, but it is only easy because the sensors in your arm and hand keep sending messages to your brain about where they are. This lets your brain adjust the movement messages its sending.

Without this sense it would be very difficult to move the way you want to. How difficult? Well, you probably use a computer mouse a lot. Now imagine doing that with your eyes closed so that you could not see where the cursor (the little arrow) is on the screen. If you dont know where the cursor is, it is hard to figure out how much more it needs to move and in which direction.

Heres how it works. Your joints (like your wrists, knees, and such) have special sensors to tell whether how much the joint is bent and in which direction. These sensors are connected to nerves that send messages to your brain.

When some people talk about a sixth sense, they mean something that is a sort of magic way of knowing or moving things. This is not a science idea, but some people think its fun to imagine sending their thoughts to other people, knowing the future, or other things like that.

Does your nose help you taste things? Have an adult help you with this test. Cut small pieces of apple and onion. Pinch your nose closed and taste one of the pieces with your eyes close. Can you tell which it is?

Thanks for asking,

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