Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Research (Unconscious Minds)

I have created this comic called Unconscious Mind (research) to show information on a current research in the medical science of the mind. I know this topic also deals with psychology, but after reading this article called Unconscious Processing: Things You Didn't Know You Didn't Know it is clear that not all unconscious processing is just brain activity, but how that brain activity effects the body and homeostasis. I have learned about this recently in pyschology & about muscles in anatomy, so I have some prior knowledge to the subject. This cartoon is just a fun/cute way to describe to bare minimum of what I got out of this research. I realize how it impacts everyones daily lives and so I thought it would be interesting to read more about.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Skeletal Muscle Tissue - Muscle Anatomy

Our anatomy class is working to finish understanding the muscle system before Christmas break is here, so we have divided it into 3 different sections that all the class will work on and then teach to people studying the other sections. The 3 parts include: muscle anatomy, sliding filament model, and neuromuscular junction. Sierra, Sidney, and I decided to do the muscle anatomy. To display our learnings and to present what we learned for others is we created a poster on which we drew, colored, and labeled the anatomy.

Let's take a moment to break this poster down...
Our first view is looking at the muscle as a whole:
This shows the bulk of the muscle. If you were to look at a specific muscle such as the bicep or tricep this is the anatomy you would find. Some major parts in this section is the muscle belly and the triad.
The second section we will be looking at is an extension of one of the fasicals to show even the smaller break down of muscles. 
We broke down each of these fasicals all the way inside a single muscle fiber to the myofibril which is the contractible unit of the muscle.
Lastly, this is a very detailed diagram of the contractible bands in the muscle. 
This is a break down of muscle anatomy. We had fun making this poster and we also learned a ton about this structure. I think we did very well on this poster and our understanding is at a proficient level. Next steps will include learning what the others have to teach us about the other 2 sections and in return teaching them about muscle anatomy. This was a great way to incorporate experience in working with a group and community teaching. Helping to teach others in ways that we understand the best; its not text book talk, its people to people talk, real talk, and that makes the learning experience even that much better!
Hope you enjoyed my post! Have a great day! :)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Electromyogram (EMG) Lab Analysis

My anatomy class is learning about muscles and we decided a fun way to kick off this section would be with an EMG lab. EMG is a graphical recording of electrical activity within muscles. Activation of muscles by nerves results in changes in ion flow across cell membranes, which generate electrical activity. Our objectives in this lab include: obtain graphical representation of the electrical activity of a muscle, the associate amount of electrical activity with the strength of muscle contraction, and to compare masseter muscle function during different types of chewing activity. We achieved all of these objectives within this lab and learned a lot about this topic while having fun!

If we test the jaw while chewing different foods then the foods that are harder will have a bigger max reading on the electrical activity than softer foods because the jaw has to work harder to chew those items.

Logger Pro on computer
EKG probe
electrode tabs
different foods with varying hardness
experimentalist to chew the food

1. Open Logger Pro. Connect the correct cords to the computer and the probers to face of the experimental body's lower jaw and and upper jaw with the electrode tabs.
2. Start the data collection by having the experimentalist relax their jaw for 5 seconds while recording and then clench for 5 seconds.
3. Use the next set of data collection to compare the muscle action in the chewing of different foods. Use the foods you have selected. Have the experimentalist put them in their mouth, then start the data collection. Allow them to rest their jaw for 5 seconds and then tell them to chew until swallowing and the graph will record the difference.
4. Repeat this action until all food types are tried.


Data Analysis:
From this data we can see that some of the foods that we chewed caused a higher or lower electrical activity in the jaw muscle. We will use the clenching as the average chewing activity. Our experimentalist had a .6 in his change of mV as you can see on our chart. Everything after this shows the different hardnesses in electrical activity during chewing. We found that out of the food we tested beef jerky (change of 1.6 mv)used the most jaw power and had the most electrical activity while chewing and that pudding and straw (mild sucking) caused the least jaw power and electrical activity with a change of .1 in mV. The other food was ranked anywhere in between these two numbers (max and min), however none were exactly the same as the average clenching of the jaw.

By following the correct procedures and collecting our data our hypothesis was true. It is true that if we test the jaw while chewing different foods then the foods that are harder will have a bigger max reading on the electrical activity than softer foods because the jaw has to work harder to chew those items. Our graph and analysis prove our hypothesis to be right. We had a lot of fun doing the activity as well which makes it even better!

I feel like this lab was a great way to start off our muscle systems series! It really helped me to think about the muscles that we use daily and never really think about. That is very important to recognize because when you're sore that can be a warning sign telling you you have been using different muscles and to not over do it, but work at strengthening them. This is something that can help us to be cautious and know our bodies a little better.
Patterns that I saw in the different foods in this particular where that the harder the item to chew was the bigger change it had in mV. This was relatable to our hypothesis which was later proven to be true!
I feel like all through out this lab my group worked diagently and well together. We also collected accurate data and had a fun time doing it so I would say this was a successful project and that I did good. Next steps could include other muscles electrical activities to see which muscles cause large changes in mV or other projects that could be linked to this data such as just even testing a wider variety in food or even extending to non foods and just biting down on them.

Overall, our project was a great success. I hope this helped you to undersand our lab and a little bit about electrial activity in the jaw when you chew certain foods.

PS- don't forget to chew your food!!