The Mouth and Buccal Cavity

What is Buccal Cavity?

The mouth is also called as the buccal cavity or the oral cavity. In the human digestive system mouth is the upper end or the beginning of the alimentary canal, which leads to the pharynx and to the esophagus. In humans, both the mouth or the buccal cavity and the nasal cavity are separated by the palate.

The buccal cavity mainly comprises the primary organ of the digestive system including the teeth, tongue and salivary glands.

Also, read Digestive System In Humans

The mouth is an opening through which the food is taken inside the body. It is bounded by lips and its inner parts comprise of the cheeks, tongue, upper jaw and lower jaw.

The upper jaw is fixed, which forms the roof of the mouth cavity and consists of palate, teeth, and gums surrounding the teeth. The lower jaw is movable and forms the floor of the mouth cavity, which consists of the tongue along with the teeth and gums surrounding them. The mouth plays an important role in speech, helps in breathing in certain cases, when the nose is blocked and during strenuous exercise. It is also the most important part of the human body, which permits us to enjoy the food we eat and also to communicate with the rest of the world.

The mouth or the oral cavity comprises of two parts:

  • The oral cavity proper — It mainly comprises of the tongue.
  • The oral vestibule – It is the slit-like space between the teeth and the buccal cavity and between the lips and cheeks.

Let us learn in detail about the main parts of the buccal cavity or an oral cavity.

Parts of the Buccal Cavity

Lips

Lips are the soft, muscular and movable structures, which are formed by the complex of orbicularis oris muscles. The reddish-pink appearance of the lips is mainly because of the underlying blood vessels which are covered by the thin and transparent epithelium tissues.

Buccal mucosa

It is the inner lining of the cheeks and the back of the lips. It provides a round shape to the cheeks.

Tongue

It is a large, muscular organ, which occupies most of the oral cavity and can take up a variety of shapes and positions. There are 50 to 100 taste receptor cells in each taste buds, which are located in the lining of the mouth. It is the main sense organ of human beings and is involved in:

  • Sense of Taste
  • A major organ of speech
  • Oral cleansing of the mouth
  • Squeezing food into the oropharynx while swallowing
  • Formation of clear and distinct sound during the speech.

Teeth

The teeth are the strongest and rigid substances in the human body. A normal adult has 32 teeth and is divided into incisor, canine, molars and premolars. There is a third molar, which is called the wisdom teeth, which appear in a person’s late teens or early twenties.

Each tooth consists of a crown with one or more tips, a neck, and a root. The Pulp cavity is the centre part of the tooth, filled with blood vessels, nerves and connective tissues and is surrounded by an enamel, which protects the tooth against scratch, cut and from the invasion of bacteria present in the mouth.

Also, read Teeth – Different Types in Humans

Important Questions for You

  • What are the main parts of the mouth?

The mouth, also called as the oral cavity includes teeth, tongue, salivary glands, tonsils, back of the throat and the epiglottis. The mouth is an important part as it helpful for speech and communication, eating and digestion, and can also be used for breathing.

  • What is the function of the buccal cavity?

The buccal cavity or oral cavity is the beginning of the alimentary canal, which leads to the pharynx to the esophagus. It is separated by the palate and functions as an entrance to the digestive system and is composed of the teeth, tongue, and palate.

  • What are the 4 types of teeth?

The four types of teeth are:

  1. Incisors
  2. Canines
  3. Premolars
  4. Molars

This was the brief introduction to the mouth and the Buccal Cavity. Stay tuned with BYJU’S to learn more about the mouth, digestive system and other related topics @ BYJU’S Biology

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