Difference Between Uvula and Epiglottis

Human body is the most amazing creation of nature it has the most amazing and gifted organ the brain that has the ability to think a lot and even bring that to the real world with the ability of unity that is only seen in human beings.


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The human body contains organs, body parts, all kind of well-developed system like circulatory, nervous and respiratory system enclosed within flesh and bones with all together thousands of nerves and body parts that are still being researched even after such a long existence of the humans.

Our body contains a lot of parts that re studied by different types of professional at different times like the cardiologist specializes in heart the neurologist is a specialist for nervous system.

Both the organs that is Uvula and Epiglottis share a lot of same structure and sometimes can be confusing many a times these organs are not studied extensively but plays an important role in how are body functions and works.

If one of these organs stops working one can die due to choking on to liquids and solids as they can enter the trachea.

Uvula vs Epiglottis

The difference between uvula and epiglottis is that the uvula hangs onto the throat of the humans and are pretty visible to the human eye it is sometimes used to determine the illness whereas the epiglottis is situated deep down the throat and is not visible to the naked eye. Moreover, the exact function is unknow for the uvula but it may be used to excrete saliva and the epiglottis serves a very important function as it becomes the guard to protect the trachea so the food doesn’t enter while swallowing.

Uvula vs Epiglottis

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonUvulaEpiglottis
MeaningIt is a muscular sag like structure that suspends after the tongue and helps to cover the windpipe, so no foreign object enters.It is a muscular sag like structure that suspends after the tongue and helps to cover the windpipe, so no foreign object enters.
location  It is present where the tongue ends at the soft palate above the tongue.It is located deep down where the tongue ends deep down in the throat to cover the trachea’s opening.
Type of StructureIt is a muscular type of structure due to the presence of nerves.It is a cartilaginous structure due to the soft kind of system.
FunctionIt covers the nasopharynx or the upper part of the pharynx.It covers the opening of the trachea while eating or swallowing by creating a guard.
Type of ShapeThe Uvula is a leaf-type shape or a sag kind structure.The Epiglottis is in a wedge shape to guard entirely.            
What Does the Structure Contains?The Uvula contains serous glands that contain and excrete mucous and salvia.The Epiglottis contains the taste buds. That is why the food can be felt and tasted deep down the throat many times.
Which Organ is Protected?The Uvula prevents the food from entering the nasopharynx, which is above the food pipe.The Epiglottis prevents the food from entering the trachea. In both cases, it can result in excess choking.

What is Uvula?

Uvula is soft leaf shaped sag like structure that is suspended from the top palate and hangs above the tongue.

The uvula plays a major role in the digestion as it acts as a cover Infront of the entry of the nasopharynx so that it doesn’t lead to food getting stuck and choking.

It also helps in secretion of the salvia and mucous that helps in lubricating the food so it slides easily through the gut. It is a muscular structure due to the way it suspends and a lot of nerves endings.

The uvula also helps in detection of many illness like common flu as it may be pale or sometimes swollen, or chickenpox as in many cases the pox starts from the uvula.

Overall if I was absent the food could have entered and cause a lot of problem and excess chocking as the ending of the mouth is the place where both tubes open up, the uvula would also help many a times to direct the excess mucous flow in the mouth in order to get rid of it in case of excess nose blockage.


What is Epiglottis?

Epiglottis is a wedge like structure deep down in the throat near the opening of the trachea.

The epiglottis also serves a very important function in the digestive and the respiratory system.

The epiglottis is a guard like structure that closes whenever it senses the food incoming so in order that the food does not enter the trachea or the wind pipe.

The epiglottis is a cartilaginous structure meaning it is soft and shows an active movement and moves back and forth to cover the trachea.

It also contains taste buds therefore many a times food is felt in the throat and a lot of spicy food irritates the epiglottis leading to coughing.

It many also get swollen due to seasonal allergies that can cause a problem in swallowing therefore it is advisable to take liquids during the time.


Main Differences Between Uvula and Epiglottis

  1. The uvula is the body part that is found in our mouth, suspended from the mouth top. It helps prevent the food or any foreign object from entering the nasopharynx, whereas the epiglottis is the part found in the throat that protects the trachea from any item.
  2. The uvula is a muscular structure because of the presence of so many nerves and being able to have a flexible design and suspension. In contrast, the epiglottis has a cartilage structure, a soft-to-touch system because of the constant movement. It tends to be quiet.
  3. The uvula contains the serous glands that initially help develop salvia that is a required enzyme to soften the food so it can easily pass through the gut. In contrast, the epiglottis contains taste buds; therefore, spicy food can lead to coughing when it touches the epiglottis.
  4. The epiglottis is a movable membrane meaning that it opens up when the food is not incoming and closes whenever we eat or drink. In contrast, the uvula is a non-movable yet so structure that serves the purpose of covering.
  5. The uvula is often served as a great way to know if the person is ill as it may change the colour, pale up, or even get swollen like many times common flu can be detected while looking at the uvula. In contrast, the epiglottis is situated deep under, so it serves no purpose for any detection.
Difference Between Uvula and Epiglottis



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