What is the function of thinking

The human brain - structure, function, diseases

The brain is one of the most important organs. It is not only responsible for the control of all vital body functions, but also enables thinking and remembering. In addition, it is the center of emotional experience and therefore has a great impact on everyone's life.

Importance and function of the brain

Usually the brain has one Weight averaging 1.5 kilograms. The volume is primarily dependent on body size and gender. However, there is no direct connection between the weight of the brain and human intelligence.

Due to its great importance, special protection against injuries and vibrations is required. Because of this, both secure it numerous buffer structures as well as a thick skull bone. The buffer structures act as an effective shock absorber.

Must for the full functionality of the brain Billions of nerve cells continuously communicate with each other and exchange data. Basically be for it electric impulse that work in a similar way to a modern computer network.


Structure of the brain

The human brain is one of the most complex organic structures. It consists of two different halvesthat are connected by a so-called beam. Medicine usually refers to this as Hemispheres. In addition, medicine broadly divides the brain into four main areas. It refers to:

  • Cerebrum
  • Cerebellum
  • Diencephalon
  • Brain stem

The cerebrum

The cerebrum is the most developed area of the human brain. On average, it even includes over 80 percent of the brain mass and thus also represents the largest part of the brain. It has a strongly unfolded cortex with a thickness of two millimeters. In this way, a greatly enlarged surface is provided.

The cerebrum consists of over 23 billion nerve cells. Many people also refer to these as gray matter because of their gray color. In addition, the term cortex is also very widespread in medicine.

Overall, medicine breaks it down Cerebrum in three central areas. These are the sensory fields, the motor fields and the thought fields. In the sensory fields the brain processes the perceived sensory impressions and in the motor fields it coordinates the movements. Thinking and remembering finally take place in the thought fields.

From Polygon data were generated by Life Science Databases (LSDB). - Polygon data are from BodyParts3D., CC BY-SA 2.1 jp, Link


The cerebellum

With average 100 to 150 grams the cerebellum includes only one Tenth the mass of the cerebrum. It's located right at the base of the skull, under the posterior flap of skin of the cerebrum. This part of the brain is responsible for balance and language acquisition. In addition, it saves certain movement sequences so that these can be carried out automatically after a one-time learning phase. For this reason, the cerebellum is also part of the motor system.

The diencephalon

That part of the brain is right there between the brain stem and the cerebrum. It mainly fulfills important ones vegetative tasks and at the same time controls the Biorhythm. Medicine characterizes several sub-areas of the diencephalon. It refers to:

  • Thalamus
  • Epithalamus
  • Metathalamus
  • Subthalamus
  • Hypothalamus

Each of these sub-areas is responsible for processing other information. These include feelings such as sadness and joy as well as information from the sensory organs. For this reason, constant cooperation with the cerebrum is necessary. That is why the diencephalon filters all incoming information before it is passed on to the cerebrum, thereby avoiding overloading it.

The brain stem

The brain stem is the oldest part of the brain. Both the right and the left hemisphere of the brain almost completely enclose it. One distinguishes the following areas:

  • Midbrain
  • Afterbrain
  • bridge
  • elongated spinal cord

Each sub-area is responsible for different tasks. The main task of the midbrain is Transfer of data between the spinal cord and the cerebrum. In addition, it coordinates the movements of the eyes.



A large part of the vital processes, however, is in the Afterbrain controlled. In addition to the heartbeat, this is also responsible for metabolism and breathing. In addition, it also directs some reflexes such as coughing or hiccups. The nerve pathways from the spinal cord cross inside the posterior brain. For this reason, the information from one half of the body is always processed in the opposite half of the brain.

The cranial nerves

The cranial nerves are Collections of specialized nerve cellsthat arise from the nuclei of the cranial nerves. These are neurons that are located in the brain stem. In contrast to all other nerves in the body, these do not originate in the spinal cord. The only exception is the accessory nerve. This is also considered a cranial nerve, although it actually comes from the spinal cord.

The majority of all cranial nerves are just peripheral nervesthat are not considered an integral part of the brain. The olfactory nerve and the optic nerve form a special position. Both are actually sections of the brain, but are still considered cranial nerves for traditional reasons.

Overall there is twelve cranial nerves, which are each arranged on both sides. These are numbered with Roman numerals in the official Soemmerring classification of 1788. Each of the twelve cranial nerves directs the information from the brain to a certain area of ​​the body and thereby controls all muscles and organs. The cranial nerves include:

  • Olfactory nerve
  • Optic nerve
  • Ocular motor nerve
  • Ocular rolling nerve
  • Triple nerve (divided into the ocular nerve, mandibular nerve and maxillary nerve)
  • Eye extraction nerve
  • Facial nerve
  • Equilibrium and auditory nerves
  • Tongue and pharynx nerve
  • roving nerve
  • Leg nerve
  • Sub-lingual nerve

Common brain diseases

Each year are over in Germany alone one million patients with brain diseases provided. In most cases these are patients with migraines or polyneuropathy. In addition, however, more and more occur neurodegenerative diseases with many Germans. Parkinson's disease and multiple sclerosis in particular have increased in recent years. With modern treatment options, doctors today initiate promising therapy in many cases.



Strokes are among the most common brain diseases that occur in Germany. In many cases they lead to a limiting disability or to the death of the patient. In Germany, this disease is treated in clinics that specialize in strokes. These are mainly based on systemic lysis therapy and mechanical thrombectomy. With both healing methods, the doctors significantly improve the quality of life of patients after the stroke.



In addition, there is also frequent cerebral haemorrhage due to blunt violence, traumatic brain injury and Meningitis on. Ultimately, in addition to brain tumors, Germans also frequently suffer from epilepsy. Specialists treat each of these diseases with different therapy methods. In many cases, this involves drug therapy with psychotropic drugs. Treatment with neuroleptics and antiemetics in particular is widespread in Germany.