Thursday 17 August 2017

The Little Engine in Us

Did you know that the heart of a blue whale is about 450 kilograms? That’s the weight of an average dairy cow!!

The heart is a bag-like structure in the chest region made completely of muscles. These muscles contract and relax from the time you were just a fetus in your mother’s uterus. 

The heart is made up of four chambers each with its own blood vessel. In these blood vessels are valves that make sure that blood flows in the right direction. The opening and closing of these valves are what gives the ‘lub-dub’ sound of your heartbeat. 

The heart pumps thousands of liters of blood through your body every day. First, it sends blood without any oxygen to the lungs to get oxygen. It then pumps the blood containing oxygen around all the other parts of the body. After delivering its oxygen, the blood returns to the heart to start the process of getting oxygen all over again.

During exercise, more oxygen and nutrients are needed by the muscles so blood must be delivered faster than when the body is resting. To meet these demands, the heartbeat increases. 

Generally, stethoscopes are used to listen to the heart, lungs, and intestinal tract but can also be used to listen to blood flow through vessels. The stethoscope is a very important tool used by medical professionals and health care workers to listen to your heartbeat.

If you want your heart to be healthy for the rest of your life, get plenty of exercise, follow a good diet and keep your heart clean and drug-free.

Experiment: Make your own stethoscope


60cm-long rubber hose, plastic funnel and masking tape.

1.    Insert the nozzle of the plastic funnel into the opening of one end of the 60cm-long rubber hose. 

2.    Wrap the neck of the plastic funnel where it joins the rubber hose with masking tape to ensure it is airtight.
3.    Place the mouth of the plastic funnel on your chest and place the opening end of the rubber hose to your ear.
4.    Listen closely to your heartbeat.

Glossary of terms:

Muscle [muhs-uhl] tissues in the body that produce movement
Uterus [yoo-ter-uhs] the organ in a woman’s body where a fetus develops
Blood vessel [bluhd ves-uhl] tubes that circulate blood throughout the body
Valve [valv] a structure that allows fluid to flow in one direction only
Oxygen [ok-si-juhn] a colorless, odorless gas in the atmosphere that is used in respiration

Shared by Surain A. Victor
Guest Blogger

No comments:

Post a Comment