Tactile perception is, in some respects, simply the sense of touch. It also refers to the brain’s ability to perceive what the hands are experiencing. Touch is actually a complex system, called the somatosensory system and results from several modalities in the body.
The impression that the individual receives as a result of touching is determined by pressure, stretch of the skin, temperature and vibration. The brain processes tactile perception in the parietal lobe part of the cerebral cortex. Information travels from the skin, through the nerves to the spinal chord and then to the brain.
Tactile Perception and Touch
Tactile perception is comprised of both crude and fine touch.
- Crude touch refers to the instance when an individual can discern that something has touched them, but cannot localize the specific area.
- Fine touch allows the person to both sense and localize touch.
In the fingers, the somatosensory system produces tactile perception when the various sensory receptors are stimulated. There are mechanorecptors for tactile sensation and nociceptors that process pain sensations. The neuornes then convey the information to the central nervous system. In the brain, the primary somatic sensory cortex in the parietal lobe process the information and register with consciousness what a person is touching.