Healthy Skin &nbsp|&nbsp American Skin Association

The skin, along with locks and nails, is the protective covering of the physical body. In addition, your skin stops bacteria from getting into the physical body and harmful internal organs. Skin supports the life span of all other body parts and plays a role in maintaining the disease fighting capability. Epidermis helps to control body temperature through the perspiration glands also.

When your body becomes overheated, sweat glands produce moisture (perspiration), which cools the physical body as it evaporates. As the body part accountable for the sense of touch, the skin works together with the nervous system to alert your body to potential dangers by detecting pressure, pain, heat, and cold. When subjected to the sun’s ultraviolet rays, your skin manufactures Vitamin D, an important vitamin for healthy skin.

Vitamin D promotes the body’s absorption of calcium mineral, which is vital for the standard development of healthy tooth and bones. Skin is the largest organ of your body. It contains three layers of tissues: the epidermis, the dermis, and the subcutaneous layer. The epidermis is the paper-thin external layer of the skin. The outer layer of the epidermis contains dead cells that are always washing or flaking off. They are replaced by new cells produced in the lower portion of the epidermis, which move upward to the outside of your skin.

As they do so, the cells harden and perish. This cycle of cell creation and replacement needs about 28 times. The epidermis also contains melanocytes, the cells that contain melanin – the pigment that gives pores and skin its color. Pores and skin are determined by the quantity of melanin in these cells, not cell number. The greater melanin, the darker the skin.

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The dermis, the middle layer of the skin, contains arteries, nerves, hair roots, perspiration glands, and oil glands. It makes up about 90 percent of the skin’s width and is made up of collagen and elastic fibers that give the skin power and elasticity. The subcutaneous layer, the deepest level of the skin, is mainly constructed of fatty tissue. It also contains blood vessels and nerves. The fat insulates the body from extreme heat and cold and a cushion to safeguard your body from injuries.

Hair and nails also protect the body. Hair keeps the head warm, while eyebrows and eyelashes protect the optical eyes from direct light. Hair also serves as a barrier to keep dirt from entering the eyes and nose. It is made up of keratin, a kind of non-living protein created by living skin cells. Hair grows out from hair follicles. Nails are defensive structures manufactured from hard keratin, a kind of non-living protein made by living skin cells. Their job is to safeguard the sensitive section of the toes and fingertips and to supply the fingers and hands of a grasping function.

Nail cells form at the bottom of the nail in an area called the nail matrix (the lighter “half moon” on our fingernails). Your skin discloses to the world how healthy you are – and your age. Positive lifestyle behaviors keep you healthy as well as your skin looking younger.