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Let's learn about cranial nerves, which help your face to smile, your eyes to blink, and your head to turn on your shoulders.

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(kray-nee-uhl) Cranial nerves are so called because they are found in the part of the skull called the cranium (kray-nee-um).

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(kray-nee-uhl) From the front to the back, cranial nerves are found in different parts of the brain. There are 12 pairs of cranial nerves.

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Cranial nerves use numbers called Roman numerals. Let's review Roman numerals before we go on to the next part of the lesson.

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STANDARD NUMBERS

______1______ ______2______ ______3______ ______4______ ______5______ ______6______ ______7______ ______8______ ______9______ ______10______ ______11______ ______12______

ROMAN NUMERALS

______I______ ______II______ ______III______ ______IV______ ______V______ ______VI______ ______VII______ ______VIII_____ ______IX______ ______X______ ______XI______ ______XII_____

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Cranial nerves control our senses of sight, taste, smell, touch, and hearing. They control organs, such as the heart and lungs. And they help us move parts of our bodies.

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I. Olfactory nerveII. Optic nerveIII. Oculomotor nerveIV. Trochlear nerveV. Trigeminal nerveVI. Abducens nerveVII. Facial nerveVIII. Vestibulocochlear nerveIX. Glossopharyngeal nerveX. Vagus nerveXI. Accessory nerveXII. Hypoglossal nerve

1 = Cranial Nerve I2 = Cranial Nerve II3 = Cranial Nerve III4 = Cranial Nerve IV5 = Cranial Nerve V6 = Cranial Nerve VI7 = Cranial Nerve VII8 = Cranial Nerve VIII9 = Cranial Nerve IX10 = Cranial Nerve X11 = Cranial Nerve XI12 = Cranial Nerve XII

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Let's look at the parts of the face and body the cranial nerves act on.

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Cranial Nerve I (1) controls your sense of smell.

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Cranial Nerve II (2) connects the eyeball to the occipital lobe in the back of the brain. This nerve controls your sense of sight.

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Cranial Nerve III (3) helps your eyes move and focus. This nerve also controls the size of the pupils so they change when light hits them.

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Cranial Nerve IV (4) moves your eyes down, out, and to the center.

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Cranial Nerve V (5) is the biggest cranial nerve. It controls most of your face and moves your jaw muscles when you bite, chew, and swallow.

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Cranial Nerve VI (6) moves your eye outward. You use this nerve when you look to the side.

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Cranial Nerve VII (7) allows your face to show different feelings, helps make tears and saliva, and controls the sense of taste.

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Cranial Nerve VIII (8) controls balance and the sense of hearing.

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Cranial Nerves IX (9) gives feeling to the tongue and throat. This nerve helps you swallow and controls your sense of taste.

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Cranial Nerves X (10) is the longest cranial nerve. This nerve controls organs such as the heart, lungs, and gut.

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Cranial Nerve XI (11) controls your neck and shoulders. You use this nerve to shrug your shoulders and turn your head.

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Cranial Nerves XII (12) controls your tongue so you can talk and swallow.

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