Talk about nerve!

Photodisc/Photodisc Red/GettyImages

Photodisc/Photodisc Red/GettyImages

MICHELE HENRY, Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 3:50 PM ET

Ever had one of those steamy kisses where your cheeks tingle and your eyes roll back in ecstasy? Thought it was the fire of your burning passion that ignited the movement of your lips?

Well, it wasn't.

"It's all about lucky nerve No. 7," said Dr. Cameron Clokie, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon in Toronto, explaining that the muscles around the lips, and all of them in the face, are controlled by that powerful bundle of fibres.

Sexy thoughts

It's those sexy thoughts --when the lights are low and your noses are inches apart -- that triggers lucky No. 7 to do its thing.

"Once there's stimulation by the brain, which allows the nerve to contract, then the lips pucker and that's what allows a kiss," Clokie said. "It's kinda neat."

Try wrapping your kisser around this: The set of muscles surrounding the mouth that drive your pouters to smooch are called obicularis oris.

And, they're forced into action by one of five different branches of No. 7, which is also known as the facial nerve.

To remember which branches fulfill which function dental students have come up with this acronym.

"Ten Zebras Bit My Clavicle Off," said Clokie, noting the 'C' in clavicle, could easily stand for something more salacious.

The 'T' stands for temporal -- the forehead muscle, which crinkles, the 'Z' stands for zygomatic, which lifts the cheeks and the 'B' stands for buckle that puffs them out. The 'M' is for mandibular, which moves the muscles around the mouth (we've covered that), the 'C' stands for cervical, that tenses the neck muscles and finally 'O' is for occipital -- which makes the back of the head shift around.


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