Monday 23 April 2012

Why Do We Have a Chin?

Whilst I wouldn't recommend a practical demonstration of why we have a chin, Garden Girl inadvertently did just that a couple of weekends ago. She was pushing one of those big round swings at a playground and didn't move out of the way in time. The swing came at her at head height and knocked her to the floor. It was her chin that took the brunt of the clash. On the way home, after she had been reassured that no-one could see the red marks on her chin, she asked me why we have a chin. I suggested to her that she had just found that out first hand. The chin could be there to protect the more delicate parts of the face from knocks and bumps. I pointed out that if she had not had a chin it would likely have been her mouth that got hit by the swing. The mouth is very important as it lets us eat and speak so we really want to keep it intact.

When we got back I had a little look on the internet to see if this was correct and I found that there are a few suggestions for our chins...

1) To protect the face from knocks
2) To help us speak properly
3) Because it looks good

When I explained the options to Garden Girl she was inclined to go with the protection theory, probably with thoughts of her own sore chin in mind. I am inclined to believe that all of the suggestions are true. Our bodies are complicated and certainly capable of assigning more than one function to a body part.

I had never thought too much about my chin before, but was amused when I came across this article in the Irish Times, that Ernie from Sesame Street had questioned why we have one...

And if you want to watch the song 'One Fine Face' by Ernie and Elmo, you will find it here on You Tube:

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