Prevents You from Choking

The epiglottis is a tiny organ, and its job is to make sure that food only goes into your stomach instead of your lungs.  Therefore, it is what prevents you from choking when you eat or drink.

20170510 epiglottis 01
(Click to Enlarge)
20170510 epiglottis 02
(Click to Enlarge)

Choking: When Epiglottis Makes a Mistake

Epiglottis does not always do a perfect job, and when they make a mistake, we choke.  However, most of the time, it is our own fault.  For example, when we talk and eat at the same time, epiglottis gets confused by which activity is more important and mistakenly let food get into the trachea.  This is why when people talk and eat at the same time, they sometimes choke on the food.


Next Generation Science Standards:

MS-LS1-3 Use argument supported by evidence for how the body is a system of interacting subsystems composed of groups of cells.

HS-LS1-2 Develop and use a model to illustrate the hierarchical organization of interacting systems that provide specific functions within multicellular organisms.

HS-LS1-3 Plan and conduct an investigation to provide evidence that feedback mechanisms maintain homeostasis.


What Science Does this Comic Teach?

Unit: Anatomy

⇒Chapter: Digestive System

⇒Topic: Epiglottis

Additional Information


A tube that connects the mouth to the stomach.  This is the path food travels through when we eat and drink.


A tube that connects the throat to the lungs.  This is the path air travels through when we breathe.  No food should enter the trachea.

Questions?  Comments?

For any questions, comments, or requests, contact us.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here