Mentalis is a paired conical facial muscle located in the chin. It belongs to the buccolabial muscles of facial expression, along with levator labii superioris alaeque nasi, levator labii superioris, levator anguli oris, zygomaticus major, zygomaticus minor, risorius, depressor labii inferioris, depressor anguli oris, orbicularis oris, incisivus superior and inferior, and buccinator muscles.
All these muscles work together to produce facial expressions that involve the lips, chin and cheeks. The mentalis muscle is involved in expressing doubt and contempt, as it elevates, everts and protrudes the lower lip, and wrinkles the skin of the chin.
|Incisive fossa of mandible
|Skin of chin (Mentolabial sulcus)
|Elevates, everts and protrudes lower lip, wrinkles skin of chin
|Mandibular branch of facial nerve (CN VII)
|Inferior labial branch of facial artery, mental branch of the maxillary artery
This article will discuss the anatomy and function of mentalis muscle.
Origin and insertion
Mentalis muscle originates from the incisive fossa of mandible. Its short fibers descend inferiorly to insert to the skin of the chin, at the level of mentolabial sulcus.
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The mentalis muscles lie on the mandible, on each side of the frenulum of the lower lip. The superolateral part of each muscle is covered by the depressor labii inferioris muscle, while the remainder of the mentalis muscle bellies is subcutaneous.
Mentalis is innervated by the mandibular branch of facial nerve (CN VII).
Pullings its cutaneous attachment superiorly, mentalis muscle elevates the base of the lower lip, thus everting and protruding it. This movement also wrinkles the skin of the chin. The function of these movements is to adjust the shape of the lips for drinking, as well as to express facial expressions associated with the emotions of sorrow, contempt and doubt.
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