B7- controlling body temp

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  • Controlling body temperature
    • Body temperature must be kept constant
      • The body has to balance the amount of heat energy gained (e.g. through respiration) and lost to keep the core body temp constant
      • Temperature receptors in the skin detect the external temperature, and receptors in the hypothalamus (a part of the brain) detect the temperature of the blood
      • The nervous system helps to control body temperature, using the following negative feedback mechanism
    • The body has some nifty tricks for altering its temperature
      • Too hot
        • Vasodilation- blood vessels close to the skin's surface get bigger in diameter
          • This means  that more blood gets to the surface of the skin.
          • The warm blood then loses more of its heat to the surroundings.
        • Sweating- when the water in the sweat evaporates heat is used, which cools the body.
      • Too cold
        • Vasoconstriction- blood vessels close to the skin's surface get smaller in diameter
          • This means that less blood gets to the surface of the skin, which stops the blood losing as much heat to the srroundings
        • You shiver- your muscles contract rapidly. This increases the rate of respiration and warms the tissue surrounding the muscles

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