How Our Skin Works and Why It Is So Important To Look After It

The skin is the largest and one of the most important organs of the body. A healthy skin is slightly moist, soft, flexible and possesses a slightly acid reaction and is free from any disease or disorder. The skin also has immunity responses to organisms that touch or try to enter it. Its texture or the feel and appearance ideally is smooth and fine.
The skin varies in thickness from a twelfth to a fifth of an inch or.212 cm to.508cm. The skin is thinnest on the eyelids and thickest on the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet. Continued pressure over any part of the skin will cause it to thicken as in a callous to provide more protection.
The skin of an adult covers about 18.2 square feet or 1.69 square meters and weighs approximately 6 pounds or 2.73 kilograms. The skin is elastic, resistant and under normal conditions renews itself. It functions as a protective covering for the entire body, preventing the entry of micro-organisms and other harmful substances. Sensory nerve fibers in the skin react to five separate and basic sensations: pressure, touch, temperature such as heat and cold and pain.
Every inch of skin contains millions of cells, an intricate network of blood vessels and nerves. In addition, the skin contains pores that are the openings for the oil or sebum that lubricates the skin. Most skin problems are seen on the epidermis, the surface layer of the skin but trouble can start in the dermis, the layer that lies just below the epidermis. The dermis is made of COLLAGEN, a form of protein fibers. This substance gives the skin strength, form, and flexibility. The blood vessels, fat cells and oil and sweat glands are held together by collagen fibers.
Wrinkles and sagging occur when the collagen fibers lose their flexibility.
Each square inch of our skin contains
• 65 hairs
• 95-100 sebaceous glands
• 70 meters of nerves
• 17 meters of blood vessels
• 650 sweat glands
• 9,500,000 cells
• 1,300 nerve endings to record pain
• 19,500 sensory cells at the ends of nerve fibers
• 78 sensory apparatuses for heat
• 13 sensory apparatuses for cold
• 160-165 pressure apparatuses for the perception of tactile stimuli.
The epidermis of the skin protect the delicate tissues of the body from injury. This protective ability of the skin is due to the fact that it is made of a substance called KERATIN.

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