Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Differences Between Atlas And Axis Vertebrae

Atlas vs Axis Vertebrae

You might have encountered in your biology classes the terms atlas and axis vertebrae. They are, however, hard at first to differentiate from each other. Most people tend to call them either axis or atlas interchangeably because of the proximity of the two bones, as well as their relatedness in function. The atlas bone is said to be the most superior or first bone of the cervical vertebrae of the spine. The word atlas is derived from Greek mythology: Atlas was the god who held up the celestial sphere. Comparatively, the atlas bone in the human body also holds the skull up. The atlas bone is also said to be a ring-like structure which features a posterior and anterior part with two lateral masses.

Learning of Their Differences

 

The axis vertebra is the bone which joins the spine and skull. It works in tandem with the atlas bone. Together they allow a wide range of motion for humans compared to that of animals. Some of the movements that the bones provide for the head include nodding and rotation movements of the head.

While the atlas mainly holds the head upright, the axis is responsible for extending the motion of the human head. The axis is also an important bone as it contains and encases the entire brain stem, making it crucial for the human system’s survival and functionality.

The axial vertebrae or the axis bones are also collectively called the vertebral column (or spine) in the human skeleton. The human spine is comprised of the spinal column which is essential in transporting various nerve signals from the brain to the different parts of the body. Moreover, the axial skeleton also supports the back muscles and provides more movement to the upper body. While the axial vertebrae might have a spinal column, the atlas bone does not contain any spinous process and has no articular disks attached to it. The atlas bone is found between the cranium and the axis vertebrae.

Uses of the Atlas and Axis Vertebrae

 

The atlas and axis vertebrae are important in the balance of the skeletal frame of the human body. Without each part of the vertebrae the body cannot function properly. It is best to understand these parts by learning that the atlas vertebrae is for stability while the axis is for motion and function of the latter. Both may relate to the skeletal system but the axis vertebrae is rather tackled in anatomy more than the atlas vertebrae, in that the former falls under the skeletal system functions.

Their uses are somewhat far from each other though both are essential and are needed for movement and for balance of the body. Proper maintenance of the skeletal frame is essential. Chiropractors are the doctors who help keep the bones in place for better balance of the body and to make sure that our frame is in the right place. It is best to visit a chiropractor once in a while to get a bone-tingling fixation from time to time.

Summary:

  1. The atlas bone is said to be the most superior or first bone of the cervical vertebrae of the spine. The word atlas is derived from Greek mythology: Atlas was the god who held the celestial sphere.

  2. The axis vertebra is the bone which joins the spine and skull. It works in tandem with the atlas bone. Together they produce a wide range of motion for humans compared to that of animals.

  3. Their uses are somewhat far from each other though both are essential and are needed for movement and for balance of the body.


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