How Many Taste Buds Do Humans Have?

many-taste-buds-humans Credit: Steenbergs/CC-BY-2.0

The average adult has approximately 10,000 taste buds that regenerate every two weeks. As a person ages, though, some taste buds are not replaced. For this reason, older adults may only have 5,000 working taste buds.

Taste buds are sensory organs that are found all over the top of the human tongue. They allow people to experience tastes that are sweet, salty, sour and bitter.

Taste buds all have tiny hairs on them known as microvilli. These tiny hairs sense food and drinks in the mouth and send signals to the brain about how the food or drink tastes. The brain then integrates this information and allows people to taste the different flavors of food.