Anatomy of the Brain


Dr. Reynolds
As you know, the brain is an extremely important organ. It controls all of the body’s functions, thoughts, and emotions. Through our five senses of sight, taste, touch, smell, and hearing, our brain receives and sends signals throughout our body — often many at the same time. Our body then uses these signals to think, move, talk, see, and understand. These signals also control our personalities and the ways we behave. Each part of the brain has a specific job and links with other parts of the brain to do other tasks.

The outermost and largest part of the brain is called the cerebrum. It controls things like thoughts and actions. The cerebrum is divided it into two halves, known as the left and right hemispheres.

Each hemisphere of the cerebrum is divided into four sections, called lobes. These lobes are known as the frontal, parietal, occipital, and temporal lobes.

The frontal lobes control our movement, intelligence, reasoning, decision-making, behavior, memory, personality, and mood.

The parietal lobes guide our intelligence, telling right from left, reasoning, language, reading ability, and sense of touch.

The temporal lobes control our speech, behavior, memory, hearing, vision, smell, and emotions.

The occipital lobes receive and process visual information, such as recognizing colors and shapes.

Beneath the cerebrum is the limbic system, sometimes referred to as the "emotional brain." This part of the brain is involved with human emotions and memories.

Underneath the limbic system, located at the base of the brain, is the brain stem. The body’s most basic functions, such as breathing, heartbeat, and blood pressure, are controlled by the brain stem.

Located at the back of the brain beneath the occipital lobes, is the cerebellum. Like the cerebrum, the cerebellum is divided into two halves, called hemispheres. The main job of the cerebellum is to control, regulate, and coordinate movement, posture, and balance.

Shaken baby syndrome can cause short- and long-term damage to the brain, depending on the area or areas affected. Shaking or hurting a baby is NEVER an appropriate response. Poor vision or blindness, behavioral or developmental issues, and coordination problems are only a few of the possible effects of SBS and abusive head trauma.