Fascinating Facts About Your Spine

While the human body as a whole is fascinating, have you ever thought of how amazing your spinal column is? Your spine is able to support your body weight, provide flexibility, and protect your spinal cord. 

We thought it was about time we share with you why we decided to devote our lives to the spinal column.

Our vertebrae

When we’re born, our spines consist of 33 individual vertebrae. As we age, some of those vertebrae begin to fuse together. For example, humans aren’t born with a tailbone. The tailbone is created when your coccygeal vertebrae fuse together to form one bone.

By the time we’re adults, we have the following vertebrae:

  • 12 thoracic vertebrae
  • 7 cervical vertebrae
  • 5 lumbar vertebrae

And if you aren’t already amazed by your vertebrae, we have a fun fact that may change your mind. Humans have the same number of vertebrae in their neck as a giraffe.

All of the muscles, ligaments, and joints

Your spine contains hundreds of muscles, ligaments, and joints to provide you with support and flexibility. Did you know that your ligaments are what stabilizes the spinal column? They do so by keeping the vertebrae interconnected.

Your spine has:

  • Over 120 muscles
  • 220 individual ligaments
  • Over 100 joints

The cartilage

Cartilage is often overlooked, but it’s a major part of your spine’s anatomy. In fact, over ¼ of the spine’s length is cartilage. You may be asking yourself what exactly cartilage is. It’s a spongy substance that separates the vertebral discs.

Here’s another fun fact for you. Has someone you know ever complained of getting shorter as they age? This is likely due to cartilage. Since cartilage can expand and contract, the constant pull of gravity on your body can result in shrinkage.

As you can see, the spine truly is an intriguing part of your body. If you would like to continue to learn more about your spine, please like us on Facebook and subscribe to our monthly email newsletter.