Sep 6, 2019

Skin Facts

Your skin is the largest organ in your body. It makes up about 16% of your body weight and covers about 1.73 square meters.
The skin is composed of several layers. The very top layer is the epidermis and is the layer of skin you can see. The epidermis is waterproof and serves as a protective wrap for the underlying skin layers and the rest of the body. It contains melanin, which protects against the sun’s harmful rays and also gives skin its color. The epidermis also contains very sensitive cells called touch receptors that give the brain a variety of information about the environment the body is in. It is the layer upon the dermis, the second layer of skin.

The dermis contains hair follicles, sweat glands, oil glands, blood vessels, nerve endings, and a variety of touch receptors. Its primary function is to sustain and support the epidermis by diffusing nutrients to it and replacing the skin cells that are shed off the upper layer.
The bottom layer is the subcutaneous tissue which is composed of fat and connective tissue. The layer of fat acts as an insulator and helps regulate body temperature. It also acts as a cushion to protect underlying tissue from damage when you bump into things. The connective tissue keeps the skin attached to the muscles and tendons underneath.
Our sense of touch is controlled by a huge network of nerve endings and touch receptors in the skin known as the somatosensory system. This system is responsible for all the sensations we feel – cold, hot, smooth, rough, pressure, tickle, itch, pain, vibrations, and more. Within the somatosensory system, there are four main types of receptors: mechanoreceptors, thermoreceptors, pain receptors, and proprioceptors.
Mechanoreceptors perceive sensations such as pressure, vibrations, and texture.
Thermoreceptors perceive sensations related to the temperature of objects the skin feels.
Pain receptors detect pain or stimuli that can or does cause damage to the skin and other tissues of the body.
Proprioceptors sense the position of the different parts of the body in relation to each other and the surrounding environment.

Your skin regenerates itself about every 28 days and you have an entirely new layer of skin. It naturally sheds dead skin cells every day.

There are millions of bacteria on your skin. These bacteria are harmless, and your skin microbiota can even help your immune cells to fight microbes that can cause diseases.

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