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Human Skeleton-206 Bones Structure and Functions

Human Skeleton-206 Bones Structure and  Functions.

Usually, an adult human skeleton is made up of 206 bones. Skeleton comprises of the bones of the head, spine, chests, arms, legs, and pelvic girdle. 

How bones are made?

Bones are made of connective tissues strengthened with calcium and specific bone cells. Besides, inner bones contain bone marrow. Blood cells are produced in the bone marrow.

Bones contain protein collagen, which forms a soft framework, and calcium strengthens the framework. The components of bones include osteoblasts and osteocytes, osteoclasts, osteoid, nerves and blood vessels, bone marrow, cartilage, calcium, and other minerals.

Different Types and Shapes of the Bones of the Human Body

Human skeleton or Bone Structure
Human bones. Image credit-Pixabay

There are 5 types of bones in the human body. These are described below:

1. Long bones

Long bones are mostly found in the appendicular skeleton. These types of bones are usually compacted in nature and include the bones in the limbs, both upper and lower. The femur is the longest bone in your body.

2. Short bones

Short bones are the bones with a thin layer and include bones of the wrist and ankle. Scaphoid, hamate, pisiform, capitate, talus, navicular are examples of short bones.

3. Flat bones

These are the bones with thin and curved nature. These include the bones of the skull, thoracic cage, pelvis, and sternum.

4. Sesamoid bones 

According to Wikipedia, the word ''sesamoids'' is derived from the Latin word sesamum which means sesame seed. These bones are embedded in tendons and muscles. The largest sesamoid bone in the body is the kneecap also known as patela.

5. Irregular bones

The shape of irregular bones is uncommon and complex in nature. Irregular bones include bones of the spine and pelvis. 

Different Types of Bone Cells

The bone is composed of 4  types of cells, such as osteoblasts, osteocytes, osteoclasts, and bone lining cells. These are explained below.

1. Osteoblasts
Osteoblasts are bone cells based on a single nucleus that helps synthesize bone. Osteoblasts are the main cellular component of bone. These cells are mainly responsible for bone formation, repairing, and remodeling of bones. Osteoblasts produce osteoid, which is mineralized and becomes a new bone.

2. Osteocytes
These are inactive parts of osteoblasts that have become trapped in the bone formation process. These cells play important roles in communication with bone tissues.

3. Osteoclasts
The osteoclasts usually have more than one nucleus. These cells are found on the surface of bone mineral near the dissolving bone. Osteoclasts cells are large cells. These cells originate from the bone marrow and are connected to white blood cells. These cells are made from two or more cells that fuse together.

4. Bone Lining Cells
Bone lining cells are found lining the surface of the bone. These cells have a long, slender, and flat morphology.

Functions of Human Bones

The skeleton system is build-up by the bones of the human body. Bones provide structural shape and support the movement of the body. 

Bones play vital roles in physical rigidity, storage of various minerals, and production of several sorts of red blood cells and white blood cells. The functions of bones are mentioned below. 
  • The bones are essential for the free movement of your body. Bones, along with muscles, tendons, and ligaments, help the body to move. It is the bones for which you can move your arms and legs, you can sit,  stand, walk, run, eat, many more things.
  • Bones protect the internal organs of your body, such as the brain, hearts, lungs, etc.
  • Bones act as a storehouse that can reserve calcium, phosphorus, and other micronutrients.
  • Bone marrow produces red blood cells, white blood cells, and destroys defective blood cells.
  • Bone cells release hormones for the regulation of blood glucose and fat deposition in your body.
  • Your bones help maintain the pH balance of the blood.
  • Bones can absorb toxic elements of your blood.
You need to remember the main functions of the human skeleton in a summarized form.

It supports your body to hold, helps easy movement, ensures protection of internal organs, involves the production of blood cells, provides storage of minerals, and support, movement, protection, production of blood cells, storage of minerals, and regulate endocrine.

Amazing Facts About Bones

  1. At birth, humans have about 270 soft bones, gradually some of these fuses as they grow, and eventually have 206 bones when they reach adulthood.
  2. Around 99 % of the calcium in our body is stored in the bones and teeth.
  3. The largest bone in your body is the femur-the thighbone.
  4. The smallest bone is the stapes in the middle ear [3 mm long ].
  5. Around 2 million red blood cells are produced in the bone marrow every second.
  6. The largest sesamoid bone in the body is the kneecap also known as patela.

Human Skeleton

1. The axial skeleton has 80 bones.
2. The appendicular skeleton has 126 bones.

Structure of axial skeleton

The axial skeleton consists of the head, spine, and chest contains 80 bones in total.

Head Bones

There are 28 bones in the human head. Head bones consist of 22 skull bones[8 cranial,14 facial bones], and 6 ear bones.

Spine Bones

Spine bones of human body-edumediawellness

Bones of the vertebral column
Image credit-Wikipedia



The spine, also known as the backbone or vertebral column, is part of the axial skeleton. The spine tides the spinal canal, a cavity that encircles and defends the spinal cord. Perhaps you know that the vertebrae in your vertebral column have different regions. These regions are termed cervical, thoracic, lumbar, sacrum, and coccyx. 

Chest Bones

Your chest has 26 bones consisting of 24 rib bones, sternum, and 1 hyoid bone.

Location of 80 bones of the axial skeleton

Head-28 bones [skull-22, auditory ossicles-6]

Cranial bones (8)
  • Parietal (2)
  • Temporal (2)
  • Frontal (1)
  • Occipital (1)
  • Ethmoid (1) 
  • Sphenoid (1)
Facial Bones-14
  • Maxilla (2)
  • Zygomatic (2)
  • Mandible (1)
  • Nasal (2)
  • Platine (2)
  • Inferior nasal concha (2) 
  • Lacrimal (2)
  • Vomer (1)
Auditory Ossicles-6
  • Malleus (2)
  • Incus (2)
  • Stapes (2)

Spine [Vertebral Column] -26 bones

Cervical vertebrae [7 bones]
Thoracic vertebrae [12 bones]
Lumbar vertebrae [5 bones]
Sacrum [1 bone] 
Coccyx [1 bone]

Chest-26 bones 

Ribs [24 bones]
Sternum [1 bone]
Hyoid bone [1 bone]

The appendicular skeleton-126 bones

The appendicular skeleton has 126 bones in total-the arms 64 bones, legs 60 bones, and pelvic girdles 2 bones.

Location of the appendicular skeleton-126 bones

Arms-64 bones.

[pectoral girdle 4 bones, arms, and hands 60 bones]
  • Scapula [2 bones-1 pair]
  • Clavicle [2 bones-1 pair]
  • Humerus [2 bones -1 pair]
  • Ulna  [2 bones-1 pair]
  • Radius  [2 bones-1 pair]
  • Carpals [16 bones  8 pair]
  • Metacarpals [10 bones  5 pair]
  • Phalanges [28 bones 14 pair]

Legs-60 bones

The femur [2 bones]
Patella or kneecap [2 bones]
Tibia [2 bones]
Fibula [2 bones]
Tarsals[ 14 bones]
Metatarsals [10 bones]
Phalanges of the foot 28 bones

Pelvis-hip bones - coxal [2 bones]


Name List of  206 Bones

1. The axial skeleton - Name of 80 bones.

Head-28 bones-skull 22, ear 6
Skull Paired Bones (11 x 2 = 22)
  1. Nasal
  2. Lacrimal
  3. Inferior Nasal Concha
  4. Maxillary
  5. Zygomatic
  6. Temporal
  7. Palatine
  8. Parietal
  9. Malleus
  10. Incus
  11. Stapes
  1. Frontal
  2. Ethmoid
  3. Vomer
  4. Sphenoid
  5. Mandible
  6. Occipital
Spine Bones-26 bones
  1. Cervical Vertebrae 1 (atlas)
  2. C2 (axis)
  3. C3
  4. C4
  5. C5
  6. C6
  7. C7
  8. Thoracic Vertebrae 1
  9. T2
  10. T3
  11. T4
  12. T5
  13. T6
  14. T7
  15. T8
  16. T9
  17. T10
  18. T11
  19. T12
  20. Lumbar Vertebrae 1
  21. L2
  22. L3
  23. L4
  24. L5
  25. Sacrum
  26. Coccyx

Chest-26 bones

Rib 12 pair bones. 12x2=24, hyoid 1, sternum 1
  1. Rib 1
  2. Rib 2
  3. Rib 3
  4. Rib 4
  5. Rib 5
  6. Rib 6
  7. Rib 7
  8. Rib 8 
  9. Rib 9 
  10. Rib 10
  11. Rib 11 
  12. Rib 12 
  13. Hyoid
  14. Sternum


2.The appendicular skeleton- Name list of126 bones

Arms 64 bones

  1. Scapula
  2. Clavicle
  3. Humerus
  4. Radius
  5. Ulna
  6. Scaphoid
  7. Lunate
  8. Triquetrum
  9. Pisiform
  10. Hamate
  11. Capitate
  12. Trapezoid
  13. Trapezium
  14. Metacarpal 1
  15. Proximal Phalange 1
  16. Distal Phalange 1
  17. Metacarpal 2
  18. Proximal Phalange 2
  19. Middle Phalange 2
  20. Distal Phalange 2
  21. Metacarpal 3
  22. Proximal Phalange 3
  23. Middle Phalange 3
  24. Distal Phalange 3
  25. Metacarpal 4
  26. Proximal Phalange 4
  27. Middle Phalange 4
  28. Distal Phalange 4
  29. Metacarpal 5
  30. Proximal Phalange 5
  31. Middle Phalange 5
  32. Distal Phalange 5

Legs-60 bones

  1. Femur
  2. Patella
  3. Tibia
  4. Fibula
  5. Talus
  6. Calcaneus
  7. Navicular
  8. Medial Cuneiform
  9. Middle Cuneiform
  10. Lateral Cuneiform
  11. Cuboid
  12. Metatarsal 1
  13. Proximal Phalange 1
  14. Distal Phalange 1
  15. Metatarsal 2
  16. Proximal Phalange 2
  17. Middle Phalange 2
  18. Distal Phalange 2
  19. Metatarsal 3
  20. Proximal Phalange 3
  21. Middle Phalange 3
  22. Distal Phalange 3
  23. Metatarsal 4
  24. Proximal Phalange 4
  25. Middle Phalange 4
  26. Distal Phalange 4
  27. Metatarsal 5
  28. Proximal Phalange 5
  29. Middle Phalange 5
  30. Distal Phalange 5
Pelvis-hipbones[ilium,ischium] 2 considered.


Please leave a comment if you think it is good. Take care of the bones and overall health. 
Memorize the names of 206  bones that form the human skeleton.




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