How many bones does a newborn baby have?
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Actually, babies have more cartilage than bone. A new born baby’s skeleton is made up 300-350 parts. As the baby develops, some of his or her bones combine to form larger, stronger bones. Adults consequently contain only 206 bones.
The bones in the baby are not fused at first because the baby is able to pass through the birth canal more easily.This is why the babies have fontanelles, or soft spots, in their skulls. But as the baby grows, the bones need to fuse to become stronger in order to protect the brain and other organs. The scientific term for this procedure is “intramembranous ossification” in which the calcium salts replace the connective tissues to form actual bones.
The most important function of the bones is to hold all muscles and organs together, maintaining a firm structure. Other than physical support, the bone marrows synthesize the blood and function as an important storage for minerals like calcium and phosphorus. Bones are made of living cells and collagen. The bone cells depend on blood to maintain life since the blood brings them nutrition, oxygen and also carries out the waste. The collagen in the bones helps bones to grow and repair themselves. When a tissue or bone breaks, the bone cells become active and multiply themselves to repair the injury.
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Bones form the flexible body framework called skeleton of vertebrate animals. The skeleton of bones gives the body its shape, provides rigidity to limbs of body to enable them to carry weight and apply force, and protect vital organs. It forms a system of levers operated by muscles which enables body to move and apply force.
An adult human has 206 bones. As compared to this a new born baby has about 270 bones. A baby is born with cartilage between some bones. This gives babies more flexible body structure, allows faster growth. As the baby grows, some groups of bones fuse together to form a single bone. This reduces the count of number of bones. However it must be noted that reduction in number of bone does not mean reduction in any part of the skeletal system.
Not many, newborn infants have more cartilage than bone at birth. This is why newborns are so limber, cartilage is more pliable than bone. Bones form and develop over time by a process called endochondral ossification. The cartilage is slowly replaced by calcified bone matrix, it is remodeled by the action of osteoblasts and osteocasts. Calcium salts are slowly laid in the cartilaginous tissue and form hardened bone tissue, this is called calcification of the bone.
A good example of this process is the development of the infant cranium. Newborns have "soft spots" or fontanelles in the skull that slowly grow, calcify, and fuse together to form the hardened bones of the cranium. When the bones eventually fuse together or articulate they form the cranial sutures.
300 bones while adults have only 206 bones
A new born baby bones have 300-350 parts.
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