Mastication

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Mastication

 

the mechanical processing of food in the oral cavity; consists of grinding and mixing the food with saliva. The process entails the biting off of food and mashing, crushing, and grinding it between the teeth. In animals, including man, mastication is accomplished by vertical, front-to-back, and lateral movements of the lower jaw in relation to the upper jaw, brought about by the contraction of the masticatory muscles. Movements of the tongue and cheeks, which shift the food around the oral cavity, are of auxiliary significance. Considerable pressure is exerted on the teeth during mastication.

Mastication is a complex coordinated action, regulated by a special nerve center in the medulla oblongata and also by the subcortical and cortical sections of the cerebral hemisphere. Damage to the masticatory apparatus, particularly anodontia or tooth disorders, interferes with the normal processing and assimilation of food and may cause disorders in the digestive tract.

References in periodicals archive ?
The preferred chewing side was determined using a modification of the visual spot-checking method described by Christensen and Radue (16) (1985).
Puppies are like young children, who must put everything into their mouths; you can expect plenty of chewing action from them.
My mother hated chewing because it made her lip-reading difficult.
To prevent broken teeth, dental experts recommend regular exercise of your pet to help prevent destructive chewing and having several veterinarian-recommended toys to chew so as to distract them from the bad ones.
By showing that gum chewing can be healthy, companies that make and sell gum hope that we'll chew even more.
Mr Roche said: "If you put a 100 per cent levy on chewing gum you might actually stop some people chewing but you wouldn't stop them spitting it out on the streets.
It is documented that chewing gum increases salivary flow, which increases the buffering capacity of saliva.
2) With regular use, chewing xylitol gum 3-5 times daily for about five minutes has been shown to reduce caries rates by between 35-70% in caries-prone patients.
Ray Mallon has blasted those responsible for the mess on the town streets caused by discarded chewing gum.
Thirty-six percent stated that they would like to share a piece of chewing gum with screen stars Julia Roberts or George Clooney.
TOKYO: A unique chewing gum which claims to help memory loss and poor concentration could be used in the treatment of those suffering dementia.
He recently received a patent for an, "environmentally friendly" I chewing gum that won't make a mess of the environment or your stomach.