What are neurons?
A neuron, also known as a nerve cell, is a cell that receives, processes, and transmits information through signals.
The human brain contains about 100 billion neurons. They are the basic units of the nervous system which are the parts of your body which control movements, senses, thoughts, and feelings. They carry impulses from one part of your body to another which is why they are much longer than other cells.
Anatomy of a Neuron:
Neurons have three basic parts:
- a cell body
- an extensions called an axon
- another extension called a dendrite.
How do neurons work?
The axon transmits messages from the cell while the dendrite receives messages for the cell.
Neurotransmitters: Neurons communicate with each other by sending chemicals, called neurotransmitters. The neurotransmitters are released into the space between the end of an axon and the tip of a dendrite from another neuron.
Synapse: This space between the end of an axon and the tip of a dendrite is called a synapse. The neurotransmitters pass through the synapse to the next neuron so that the message is carried on.
Ready to learn more?
Here’s my 2-minute drill on Neurons!