Are dendrites larger than axons

Psychiatry, psychosomatics & psychotherapy


The nerve cells are the building blocks of our nervous system. They have a cell body and cell processes that connect them with other nerve cells or with body cells such as muscle or gland cells. These processes are called axons and dendrites. Axons transmit signals to other neurons or target cells, while dendrites mostly receive the signals from other neurons. The length of the axons and dendrites ranges from a few thousandths of a millimeter to over a meter. In addition to the neurons, the nervous system contains glial cells and a dense network of blood vessels that ensure an adequate supply of oxygen and nutrients. The glial cells support the nerve cells and play an important role in the rapid transmission of signals between the neurons.

Central nervous system and peripheral nervous system

Our nervous system is divided into the central nervous system (CNS) and the peripheral nervous system. The central nervous system is made up of the brain and the spinal cord. The nerve cells lying outside the brain and spinal cord belong to the peripheral nervous system. They form nerve cords that run from the brain and spinal cord to the periphery of the body and back from there. Organs, muscles and glands are controlled via these nerve cords, which consist of a large number of nerve fibers (axons), and signals are received by the skin, eyes, ears and other organs.

Areas of the brain

The brain is divided into 5 larger sections for orientation. These are the cerebrum, the diencephalon, the midbrain, the cerebellum, and the posterior brain. The brain is surrounded by 3 layers of skin. The outer shell (hard meninges) is firmly connected to the inside of the skull bones. There is fluid between the inner and middle skin, which acts like a kind of shock absorber in the event of vibrations and thus helps protect the brain. Inside the brain there are 4 cavities (cerebral chambers) that are filled with cerebrospinal fluid. Our brain weighs around 1,400 grams. The brain of men is on average somewhat larger and heavier than that of women, although this difference in size does not allow any direct conclusions to be drawn about mental characteristics such as intelligence. The aging process does not leave our brains without a trace. Over time, nerve cells die, so their number decreases with age.


The cerebrum, the development of which humans, with all of its unique and diverse abilities, makes possible, takes up 80% of the brain's mass. It consists of a right and a left hemisphere of the cerebrum, which are connected to one another by a broad and thick nerve cord (the "bar"). The outer layer of the cerebrum is the cerebral cortex. It is 2 to 3 millimeters thick and is also known as gray matter because of its appearance. The cerebral cortex gets its gray color from the cell bodies of the neurons. Below the cerebral cortex is the white matter. This is where nerve fibers run, which on the one hand connect different areas of the cerebral cortex and on the other hand the cerebral cortex with other regions of the brain.