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Body temperature regulation (thermoregulation)
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For humans, the normal body temperature ranges between 36.1°C, or 97 °F, and 37°C, or 98.6°F.
Thermoregulation is needed in response to internal and external temperature variations.
Internal temperature variations are sensed by specialized nerve cells, called thermoreceptors, located in the anterior hypothalamus.
Now, the hypothalamus works as a thermostat.
The back part or the posterior hypothalamus, on the other hand, responds to decreased environmental temperatures.
Changes in the external temperature are sensed by the skin thermoreceptors, which are specialized nerve cells located in the skin.
For example, during winter, when the environmental temperature is less than the body temperature, the skin receptors sense these variations and send the information to the anterior hypothalamus which will then inform the posterior hypothalamus that the body has to generate heat.
Now, besides the behavioral habits, such as putting more clothes on or drinking hot tea, there are several other physiologic mechanisms through which heat production is increased.
First, thyroid hormone action is stimulated.
Thermoregulation is the process by which an organism maintains its internal body temperature within a certain range, despite changes in external conditions. For the human body, it ranges between 36.5 �C to 37.5 �C. The main purpose of thermoregulation is to keep the enzyme systems of the body working properly. The part of the brain responsible for thermoregulation is called the hypothalamus. It receives information about the temperature status from some specialized nerve cells called thermoreceptors.
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