Here are some interesting FACTS about your Skin
- It is the largest organ of the body.
- It sheds, in the average persons lifetime, around 20kg of dead skin cells.
- Together with the hypothalamus in the brain, it controls our ability to cope withe the heat. It regulates the body’s ability to function in the heat through perspiration. Perspiration is made up of salt and other body chemicals.
- It is a guide to the general health of the body.
- It protects the body from injury and bacterial invasion. The outermost layer of the skin, the epidermis, is covered with a thin layer of sebum, making it waterproof.
- Through it’s sensory nerve endings, the skin responds to heat, cold, touch, pressure and pain.
- Sebum is excreted by the sebacious glands into the dermis.
- The skin has an immunity response to many things that touch it or gain entry to it.
- The skin actually breathes because it takes in oxygen and discharges carbon dioxide.
- The amount of carbon dioxide released by the skin in 1 hour is 1% of the carbon dioxide released by the lungs during the same time.
- The entire organ, the full thickness of skin, is replaced every 6-9 months.
- Skin cells are replaced approximately every 28 days.
- It is 50-75% water. It has 3 layers: epidermis, dermis and subcutaneous layer.
ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY OF THE SKIN
- The skin is the largest organ of the body.
- The skin of an adult, on average, covers 1.69 square meters.
- The skin varies in thickness from .212cm (eyelids) to .508cm (palms of hands and soles of feet).
- The skin of an adult, on average, weighs 2.73 kg.
- The skin is elastic, resistant and under normal conditions renews itself.
- It functions as a protective covering for the body, preventing the entry of micro organisms and other harmful substances.
- Sensory nerve fibres in the skin react to five seperate and basic sensations: pressure, touch, temperature(heat and cold)and pain.
- Each cm of skin contains millions of cells and an inticrate network of blood vessels and nerves.
- The skin also contacins pores that are openings for hair follicles, sebaceous glands and sweat glands.
- Collagen makes up 70% of the dermis.
- The space between collagen fibres contains a protein called elastin.
- The condition of the skin’s collagen causes lines and wrinkles.
- Normally collagen molecules slide over one another giving the skin softness and resiliency but when damaged by free radicals leads to chemical change and cross linking which cause the skin to become stiff and inflexible.
- The skin cells reproduce, on average, every 4 weeks.
- The entire levels of the skin are replaced every 6-9 months.
- The skin is 50-75% moisture.
- Cells are the basic unit of all living things.
- A cell contains membrane, nucleus, cytoplasm and centrosome.
- The skin and it’s accessory organs are called the integumentary system.
- Inside your skin cells, free radicals activate molecules called transcription factors. They are chemical messengers that signal cellular DNA to produce proteins that tell your cells what to do. These transcription factors happily float around the cells harmlessly until stimulated by sunlight or one of the other free radical triggers and then they become cross linked and start to eat the collagen.
HOW THE SKIN’S CONDITION IS DETERMINED
There are many factors that decree the condition of the skin. These are in no particular order of importance.
- Genetics – inherent facts are important
- General health
- Drugs recreational – use of
- Drugs medical – prescribed or taken
- Vitamins and minerals – taken orally
- Genetics and environment together