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Help your skin be fine home page

 

 

Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter.

Mark Twain




Help your skin be fine

 

 

 



Skin care. Help your skin be fine.

In zootomy and dermatology, skin is an organ of the integumentary system composed of a layer of tissues that protect underlying muscles and organs. As the interface with the surroundings, it plays the most important role in protecting against pathogens. Its other main functions are insulation and temperature regulation, sensation and vitamin D and B synthesis.

Mammalian skin often contains hairs, which in sufficient density is called fur. The hair mainly serves to augment the insulation the skin provides, but can also serve as a secondary sexual characteristic or as camouflage. On some animals the skin is very hard and thick, and can be processed to create leather. Reptiles and fish have hard protective scales on their skin for protection, and birds have hard feathers, all made of tough β-keratins. Amphibian skin is not a strong barrier to passage of chemicals. A frog sitting in an anesthetic solution will quickly go to sleep.

The skin is often known as "the largest organ in the human body". This applies to exterior surface, as it covers the body, appearing to have the largest surface area of all the organs. Moreover, it applies to weight, as it weighs more than any single internal organ, accounting for about 15 percent of body weight. For the average adult human, the skin has a surface area of between 1.5-2.0 square metres, most of it is between 2-3 mm thick. The average square inch of skin holds 650 sweat glands, 20 blood vessels, 1000 melanocytes, and more than a thousand nerve endings.

Skin is composed of the epidermis and the dermis. Below these layers lies the hypodermis(subcutaneous adipose layer), which is not usually classified as a layer of skin.

The outermost epidermis is consists of stratified squamous epithelium with an underlying basement membrane. It contains no blood vessels, and is nourished by diffusion from the dermis. The main type of cells which make up the epidermis are keratinocytes, with melanocytes and Langerhans cells also present. The epidermis can be further subdivided into the following strata (beginning with the outermost layer): corneum, lucidum, granulosum, spinosum, basale. Cells are formed through mitosis at the innermost layers. They move up the strata changing shape and composition as they differentiate, inducing expression of new types of keratin genes. They eventually reach the corneum and become sloughed off (desquamation). This process is called keratinization and takes place within about 30 days. This layer of skin is responsible for keeping water in the body and keeping other harmful chemicals and pathogens out.

Blood capillaries are found beneath the epidermis, and are linked to an arteriole and a venule. Arterial shunt vessels may bypass the network in ears, the nose and fingertips.

The dermis lies below the epidermis and contains a number of structures including blood vessels, nerves, hair follicles, smooth muscle, glands and lymphatic tissue. It consists of loose connective tissue otherwise called areolar connective tissue - collagen, elastin and reticular fibres are present. Erector muscles, attached between the hair papilla and epidermis, can contract, resulting in the hair fibre pulled upright and consequentially goose bumps.

The main cell types of skin are fibroblasts, adipocytes (fat storage) and macrophages. Sebaceous glands are exocrine glands which produce sebum, a mixture of lipids and waxy substances: lubrication, water-proofing, softening and antibactericidal actions are among the many functions of sebum. Sweat glands open up via a duct onto the skin by a pore.

The skin supports its own ecosystems of microorganisms, including yeasts and bacteria, which cannot be removed by any amount of cleaning. In general these organisms keep one another in check and are part of a healthy skin. When the balance is disturbed, e.g., by antibiotics which kill bacteria, there may be an overgrowth and infection by yeasts. The skin is continuous with the inner epithelial lining of the body at the orifices, each of which supports its own complement of flora.

Your skin is your armor, your shield from the elements. Yet when was the last time you really thought about what you need to do to take care of it? Throughout your life, genetic and environmental factors will cause a lot of wear and tear to your skin. But you are never too young or too old to start taking care of your skin.

You are never too young or too old to start taking care of your skin. In fact, skin care and protection should be an essential part of your health, fitness, and beauty regime.

If you take care of your skin, your skin will take care of you! But with all of the lotions, creams, and potions on the market, it can be difficult to know which product will work for you. Many products claim to remove wrinkles or heal dry skin. Others claim to contain expensive ingredients that they say will improve the effects of the product.

Dry skin is very common, especially with age. Older skin has fewer sweat and oil glands than younger skin. Dry skin may be caused by frequent baths, certain cosmetics or medications. But whatever the cause, there are ways to alleviate the itchiness associated with it. Avoid using harsh soaps when bathing, and if possible, cut back on the number of baths or showers each week. A sponge bath with warm water may help to clean and revive skin without stripping the skin of its valuable moisturizers.

Wash your skin thoroughly on a daily basis to remove the dirt, debris, pollutants, and perspiration that accumulates on a daily basis. If you have dry or sensitive skin, use only warm water to wash your skin and use a mild natural cleanser every few days. If you have normal or oily skin, be sure to wash with a gentle cleanser on a daily basis. Be sure to brush your teeth before washing your face, as toothpaste residue can irritate sensitive facial skin.

Use a natural sunscreen when possible, regardless of whether or not you plan on spending much time in the sun. The sun's rays are very damaging and if you get in the habit of applying sunscreen everyday, you will never be left without protection. The suns most beneficial rays occur at sunrise and sunset.

Apart from the services offered at skin clinics, many creams, gels and ointments that claim to treat acne, diminish sun or age spots and enhance skin elasticity are widely available in the market. There are scrubs, cleansers, masks, over-the-counter skin medicine and skin peel formulations, all offered at various price ranges. Most can be bought at department stores or drugstores, but the fact is that very few of these so- called miracle products actually work.

Over the years, beauty experts and skin doctors have come up with a vast array products to treat and minimize wrinkles. Anti-wrinkle creams and ointments help reduce the appearance of wrinkles and prevent new ones from forming. These wrinkle ointments and anti-aging creams help a lot in restoring the skin's firmness and elasticity. In addition, these products contain anti-oxidants and retinol that not only aids in reducing wrinkles and fine lines on the skin, but also stimulates collagen production.

The important thing to remember when seeking out treatment for your wrinkles is to know first how your body can possibly react to the treatment. Get in touch with a skin doctor for things that you are not sure of, but are contemplating on trying out.

While it is true that physical beauty is just skin deep, it is still no reason why people, particularly women, should disregard basic skin care. Since the skin is our outermost layer, it is exposed to the harsh elements of the environment. And because it is not uncommon for people to base judgments from our cover, with the face being the first thing they look at, it is only proper that we go to great lengths to keep our skin looking clean and fresh.

There are a lot of skin care products in the market today. Unlike before when a normal bar of soap was used for skin cleansing, cosmetic companies are now producing a wide variety of skin care treatments that can address various skin concerns. However, there are cases when treatments need to be more aggressive, especially for those who have aging or blemished skin. Most, if not all, of the over-the-counter products are topical in nature, meaning it only affects the epidermis or the outer layer of the skin. Aging or blemished skin needs to be treated down to the root of the problem to see definite changes.

Help your skin be fine. Skin care.






Terms used on this page

Acne


Bacteria


Dermis


Epidermis


Hypodermis


Pimples


Ultraviolet radiation


Plastic surgery may help your body feel good






 

 



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Information in this document about Skin care named Help your skin be fine is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. The information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments of Skin care. Additionally, the manufacture and distribution of herbal substances are not regulated now in the United States, and no quality standards currently exist like brand name medicine and generic medicine. Talk about Skin care to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

© Copyright 2007 United Kingdom Healthcare Association, Skin care department.































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