The skin is a flexible, elastic fabric with several important functions. For example, the skin provides information about our environment. Those informations are collected by millions of tiny, specialized nerve endings – receptors that are implanted in the skin and that feel touch, pressure, warmth, cold and pain. There are tiny glands of various types in the skin. One type of gland, saliva, produces a waxy substance that maintains the firmness and water-repellency of the skin surface, and contributes to preventing infections.
There are also a sweat-makers that create watery fluid, which cools us when it’s hot. Small blood vessels in the skin contribute to temperature regulation. For hot weather, they widen and thus lose heat; that is why we look soaked. In cold weather, the same vines are collecting to preserve the heat; that is why we look pale.
The skin contains thousands of hair follicles. These are the wells with the cells that actively divide and constantly create the hair. The largest hairs are found on the skull (scalp), the armpits and the sexual organs. The body is generally covered with smaller hairs and even tiny hairs that we can not observe with the naked eye. Cells that are actively divided and located beneath the skin folds at the root of the nail also permanently create fingernails on their toes and toes.
With regard to the position of skin, hair and nails – that is, on the fact that they represent an outer body blanket – most people will quickly notice any change in their appearance, whether it is caused by a skin disorder or a disease manifesting on the skin. In fact, most skin, hair and nail problems shown here relate mainly to visual changes. In some cases there are additional symptoms, such as itching, swelling or (sometimes) pain. Generally speaking, however, skin, hair and nail disorders do not endanger life nor are dangerous to a general health condition. However, they may be “boring” and, in some cases, cause discomfort with regard to appearance.
The skin consists of three layers (see picture above). The surface layer, which we see, is a thin cover called epidermis. Below the epidermis, there is a thicker layer called dermis. Dermis contains many specialized creations, such as hair and sweat follicles. Below the dermis there is a layer of fat subcutaneous tissue called hypodermis. The skin surface, epidermis, is very active. Cells in its basis are constantly being shared and are creating new cells that gradually build up a clot of hard matter called keratin. By development of keratin, the cells die and move towards the surface of the epidermis where they replace the cells worn out by the friction of clothing or objects. In fact, every movement that causes friction removes several cells from the skin.
The constant creation of basically epidermal cells is consistent with permanent cell losing on the surface. On an average, it takes about two months for epidermal cell to reach the surface from the base. In those parts of the body that are subjected to the greatest friction and pressure, palms and thighs, the epidermis is thicker and the “journey” takes longer. A disorder in permanent change of epidermal cells cause a number of problems in the skin. For example, in cellular psoriasis, cells are produced abnormally quickly in the base layer of epidermis.
Basalioma (basal cell carcinoma)
Eczema (atopic dermatitis)
Corns and blisters
Squamous cell carcinoma
Urticaria (nettle rash)