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Throat Anatomy for self defense

This page focuses on the underlying anatomy of the throat. The ear is one of the vital points that can be targeted in a self-defense situation.

Throat Structure

  • Epiglotis: This is beneath the tongue and is a movable structure that closes the opening to the trachea so that that food and water do not get into the lungs.
  • Hyoid Bone: This is a u-shaped bone that is at the same level as the epiglottis and helps support the tongue above it, it is a floating bone as it is not connected to any other bone.
  • Larynx: This is the hollow structure beneath the epiglottis and houses the vocal cords and is attached to the hyoid bone.
  • Vocal Cords: Are membranous folds that stretch along the side of the larynx and vibrate to produce sound.
  • Thyroid Cartilage: This is the decent sized piece of cartilage that covers the outside of the larynx for protection and whose notable prominence is recognized as the Adams apple.
  • Trachea: The open tube that leads down to the lungs.
  • Tracheal Cartilate: This is cartilage that runs from the thyroid cartilage to just below the collar bone and to help protect the trachea from being closed.
  • Carotid Artery: It runs along each side of trachea supplying blood flow to the brain.
  • Vagus nerve: A pair of nerves that run along the trachea to many organs in the abdomen with predominant control over the heart influencing heart rate and blood pressure.


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