Home Science 40 Facts About Human Nose

40 Facts About Human Nose

by Sankalan Baidya
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40 Interesting Facts about Human Nose

Human nose is a miracle organ. You like it or you hate it, you need to give your nose the props for its extraordinarily diverse powers. Not only does it define our appearance but it also performs many vital functions without which humans wouldn’t have been humans. So, let us take a look at some very interesting and cool facts about human nose and find out if you knew about these facts.

Interesting Nose Facts: 1-10

1. There are at least 14 different nose types found in humans. This was found by Abraham Tamir, a Ph.D. holder and Chemical Engineering professor from Israel. He came to this conclusion after surveying 1,793 nose images.

2. The shape of nose depends on the ethnic background of a person.

3. Positions of lower and upper lateral cartilages and nasal bones actually define nose shape.

4. Different people have different sneezing styles and these styles are genetically determined. So, the members of a given family will have similar sneezing styles which will be different than the sneezing styles of other families.

5. During sneezing, irritants (that cause sneezing) are expelled at a speed of 100 miles per hour.

6. In women, nose grows until the age of 15 to 17 and for men, it is 17 to 19.

7. Nose droops and lengthens over time because of gravitational pull. This happens because elastin and collagen in nasal tip breaks.

8. The best air filter in this world is human nose. Human nostrils are lined up with hair responsible for blocking germs and dust. Grooves in nasal cavity make air swirl like stream currents. This is when the inhaled hair is moistened and warmed so that the sensitive tissues of the lungs can be protected. It is during this filtration process that the mucus lining of the nasal cavity captures cold viruses and pollen which cannot be stopped by hair in nostrils.

9. Mucus is produced by human sinuses and nose and it contains white blood cells and enzymes responsible for fighting infections. One quart mucus is produced daily.

10. When someone inhales dry air, the air picks up moisture content from mucus. This makes the mucus pasty, which is known as snot or boogers.

Interesting Nose Facts: 11-20

11. When a person becomes sick because of flu, the nose becomes runny. This happens because the nose produces more mucus than usual in an attempt to kill microbes invading the body.

12. Humans are capable of detecting 10,000+ scents. Humans can detect smell with special types of cells known as olfactory nerve cells. There are nearly 12 million olfactory cells present in a normal human. However, this number gradually decreases with age.

13. Olfactory nerves from nose have direct connection with brain. It is because of this that several types of smells can bring memories back.

14. Sense of smell is the only one of the 5 senses in humans which has direct connection with hippocampus – the part of the brain responsible for formation of memory.

15. Humans release pheromones – a type of chemical released only in response to sexual attraction. Nasal grooves in nostrils are sites rich in pheromones. Human nose is capable of detecting pheromones of opposite sex. According to experts, it is the pheromones in nose that led to the birth of smooching or romantic kissing.

16. Anything that human nose cannot smell is lethal to humans. For example, human nose cannot smell natural gas (one that humans can smell is actually a different compound called mercaptan added to natural gas), carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide etc.

17. Humans don’t smell with nose. It is the brain that does the job. The olfactory nerve cells in nose are only responsible for capturing smell and sending them to the brain. It is the brain where the smell gets identified.

18. Humans are capable of smelling feelings like sexual arousal and happiness of their romantic partner as long as the two of them are close.

19. Each individual human has an exclusive smell print. For a specific smell, two different people may have different perception. For instance, one person’s perception of turmeric scent may be different from another person.

20. Sense of smell in women is stronger than sense of smell in men.

Interesting Nose Facts: 21-30

21. Female nose becomes hypersensitive when they become pregnant. It is because of this they develop unusual carving and abnormal taste sense.

22. Men can smell ovulating women. In fact, both sexes are capable of smelling major histocompatibility complexes that appear to be different from their own. This is very important because when a person smells a different MHC in opposite sex and mates, the resulting offspring is born with a stronger immune system.

23. Nose breaks! This is a common thing to come across but nose does not have any bones. It is a cartilage that breaks.

24. Females have shorter noses compared to men.

25. There are 10 million odor receptors present in human nose. These receptors are sensitive to odor or scent molecules that travel through or float in air.

26. Nosebleed can be caused by picking nose, bumping nose, allergies, exercise, dry air or cold. Any of these factors can cause the septum (a thin cartilage between two nostrils) to break and hence, cause nosebleed.

27. Human nose is made up of only 5 different types of muscles which are dilatator naris anterior, dilatator naris posterior, depressor septi, nasalis and procerus.

28. The roof of human mouth is nothing but the floor of nasal cavity.

29. Smelling is scientifically known as olfaction.

30. Some people may have a very strong sense of smell. This is known as hyperosmia.

Interesting Nose Facts: 31-40

31. Inability to smell is scientifically known as anosmia.

32. Inability to smell something correctly is known as dysosmia.

33. Nose plastic surgery is known as rhinoplasty.

34. Humans lose some of their smelling ability at the age of 65. At the age of 80, 50% of smelling capabilities are lost.

35. Zinc deficiency in body can also lead to loss of smelling sense.

36. Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and diabetes can also lead to loss of smelling sense.

37. Human babies know their mothers by the scent of their mothers.

38. Less of human brain is dedicated to smelling as opposed to animals.

39. Women care capable of smelling more scents than men.

40. The Maori tribe in New Zealand greet people by pressing their noses! Shaking hands as a gesture of greeting is not their type.

Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4

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1 comment

Faylinn July 5, 2016 - 6:11 pm

I never realized when my nose stopped growing and so I find it interesting that that could have happened between the age of 15 to 17 for me. However, I find it interesting that men still have time for their nose to grow. Why do men have until the age of 19?

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