Brain is the complex part of the body containing multiple nerves, synapses and neurons. Different parts of the brain are responsible for controlling movements of various parts of the body and its organs. This article will take the readers through the most important parts of the brain that control movement.
Cerebrum in the brain controls voluntary movements in your body:
Cerebrum along with diencephalon occupies the forebrain which is almost 85% of the brain’s overall weight. Cerebrum is the part of the brain that controls voluntary movement of your body. For example you tend to make dance movements with your legs or hip while listening to your favorite song or music. Cerebrum is the reason behind controlling these movements by directing the voluntary motor functions in your body. Voluntary movements are originated within the primary motor cortex. Frontal lobe motor area is responsible for planning such movements. Axons, the transmitters in the neurons carry the planned activities from upper motor neurons to the brain stem and to the lower motor neurons and execute the activities or movements. If any damage caused to these areas can lead to motor neuron diseases and disturb the muscle movements including speech, walking and breathing.
Cerebellum in the brain controls and balances muscle movements:
Cerebellum is located below the cerebrum, at the backside of the brain. Cerebellum is responsible for controlling, balancing and coordinating the way your body moves. Cerebellum is the reason for you to stand, sit, drive, dance or move your muscles with a balance. Aging, head injury, migraine headache, accident, alcoholism or addiction to drugs can create problem with the cerebellum and lead to stroke, tumors and hemorrhage. Damage to the vestibular part of the cerebellum can create problems with walking and other activities that need balance. If the midline portion is damaged it can create problems in the overall body movement. When problems occur in the upper area of the cerebellum leads to issues with leg coordination. Coordination problem in arm and hands, difficulties with speed can happen when the lower part of the cerebellum is affected.
Brain Stem controls involuntary muscle movements:
Involuntary muscles are controlled by the activity of the part of the brainstem. The primary role of the brain stem is to conduct functions by transferring information through cerebrum and cerebellum. Brainstem is also responsible for the integrative functions such as respiratory and cardiovascular control, sensitivity to pain and alert feeling. Any damage to the brainstem can lead to very serious problems to cranial nerves that are life threatening.
Basal ganglia is responsible for motor control:
Basal ganglia can be located at the base of the forebrain and is connected with the cerebral cortex, thalamus and other areas of the brain. Basal ganglia is responsible for multiple functions including motor control. Motor control is in charge of decision making processes involving multiple activities like controlling and executing functions. Damage to basal ganglia can lead to movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, Tourette’s syndrome and Obsessive compulsive disorder.
Neurotransmitters work in controlling movements:
Excitatory neurotransmitter called acetylcholine in the brain are responsible for muscle contractions. These neurotransmitters also control hormone production by inducing glands. Any malfunction related to these excitatory transmitters, memory gets affected and leads to Alzheimer’s disease. GABA or gamma aminobutyric acid, known as inhibitory neurotransmitter is responsible for controlling muscle activity and visual system. Epileptic seizures, tremors and shivering can occur in patients with Huntington’s disease if the level of GABA goes low. Serotonin is another inhibitory neurotransmitter controls the movement of blood vessels. Dopamine is responsible for controlling complex movements and irregular dopamine activity can lead to the muscular tightness in people with Parkinson’s disease.
It is a responsibility of an individual not to cause of any damage to these parts of the brain. By following safety precautions while driving and getting rid of problems with alcoholism and drug addiction, one can lead a healthy and normal life.
Your Brain and nervous system Kidshealth
Brain Basics:Know your Brain Ninds.nih.gov
Basal Ganglia Wikipedia