Smell: The Forgotten Sense


Our sense of smell is something that many of us take for granted, because it doesn't seem to be necessary for our survival the way our other senses are. However, odors do indeed have an effect on our daily lives. Imagine what it would be like walking into a movie theater or a bakery and not being able to smell each of their distinct odors. Or what if you couldn't smell the flowers in the spring or the smell of a brand new book. The sense of smell adds a richness to our lives that we aren't always conscious of, but as soon as it's taken away it dramatically changes our quality of life.

Evolutionarily speaking, smell protected our primitive ancestors from predators and helped them find food. Today it's not as important to our survival as it used to be, however we still rely on it more than you would probably think. Smell affects many aspects of life such as attraction, memories, and emotions. The purpose of this website is to introduce you to some of these areas and hopefully answer some of your questions regarding the sense of smell.


Anatomy and Physiology of Smell

Odor Fatigue

Smell Disorders

Smell and Attraction

Smell and Memory

Aromatherapy

Definitions

References and Acknowledgements

About the Authors

Related Sites

Macalester College Neuroscience Page