How many bones are in the human body?

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dtc10106's profile pic

dtc10106 | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

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There are 206 bones in an normal adult skeleton and about 300 in an infants.  The difference comes from the fact the some bones fuse over time into a single bone.  For example, an infants paired frontal, periatal, and occipital plates fuse to create single skull.

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frizianne | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

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The skeleton of an adult human is made up of 206 bones of many different shapes and sizes. Added together, your bones make up about 15% of your body weight. Newborn babies are actually born with many more bones than this (around 300), but many bones grow together, or fuse, as babies become older. Some bones are long and thick, like your thigh bones. Others are thin, flat, and wide, like your shoulder blades.

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chemistchris5 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

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There are approximately 206 bones in the average human adult skeleton, but it can vary based on the degree of fusion between various bones in the body.

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mrbakertheteacher | Elementary School Teacher | (Level 1) Valedictorian

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An adult human skeleton consists of 206 bones.

These include:

- 22 Cranial and Facial Bones

- 6 Ear Bones

- 1 Throat Bone

- 4 Shoulder Bones

- 25 Chest Bones

- 26 Vertebral Bones

- 6 Arm and Forearm bones

- 54 Hand Bones

- 2 Pelvic Bones

- 8 Leg Bones

- 52 Foot Bones



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rock-star790 | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) Salutatorian

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Its 306 for a baby, but as the body matures- the bones fuse together to form around 208 bones.

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fact-finder | (Level 3) Valedictorian

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Humans are born with about 300 to 350 bones. Many of these bones fuse together between birth and maturity to produce an average adult total of 208 bones. The number of bones in the human body varies according to the counting method used. While some methods consider a given structure to be a single bone with multiple parts, others consider the same structure to be multiple bones.

Location Number Skull 22 Ears (pair) 6 Vertebrae 26 Vertebral ribs 24 Sternum 3 Throat 1 Pectoral girdle 4 Arms (pair) 60 Hip bones 2 Legs (pair) 60 Total 208

Sources: Brandreth, Gyles. Your Vital Statistics, p. 14; Solomon, Eldra Pearl, and Gloria A. Phillips. Understanding Human Anatomy and Physiology, pp. 77-80.

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karlwinn | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Honors

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The adult human body has 206 bones. An infant may have from 300-350 bones at birth. Some of these fuse together as the infant grows. When some bones fuse and become one bone (most obvious examples are in the skull, sacrum and hip bones) the number of overall bones drops to the 206 bones that most adults have.

Of the 206 bones in the adult human body, more than half (106) are in the hands and feet. The adult skeleton consists of the following bones:

  • 28 skull bones (8 cranial, 14 facial, and 6 ear bones)
  • The horseshoe-shaped hyoid bone of the neck which is the only bone that does not articulate (connect via a joint) to another bone
  • 26 vertebrae (7 cervical or neck; 12 thoracic; 5 lumbar or loins; the sacrum, which is five fused vertebrae; and the coccyx, which is four fused vertebrae)
  • 24 ribs plus the sternum or breastbone; the shoulder girdle (2 clavicles, the most frequently fractured bones in the body, and 2 scapulae)
  • the pelvic bones (3 fused bones called the coxal bone, or Os Coxae)
  • 30 bones in each of the arms and legs (a total of 120)
  • a few partial bones, ranging from 8-18 in number, which are related to joints

There are individual variations: for example, some people are born with an extra rib or lumbar vertebra and not everyone has Inca (sutural) bones.

Some interesting facts:

  • The hand has 27 bones, the foot has 26 and the face has 14. 

  • The longest bone in your body, the femur (thigh bone), is about 1/4 of your height. The smallest is the stapes (or stirrup) in the ear which is about 1/10 of an inch. 

  • Humans and giraffes have the same number of bones in their necks. 

  • Most of the bones in the body are in the hands and feet. 

  • The human body consists 206 bones for adults, but for infants there are 270.

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louie67 | (Level 1) Honors

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206 is the generally accepted # of bones. Although their are idiosynchratic instances of more or less.

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