8 Functions Of The Skin Essay

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Functions of the skin: There are eight main functions associated with the skin. These are as follows...
1. Secretion – the skin secretes sebum from the sebaceous glands. This fatty substance lubricates the hair shafts and when combined with perspiration on the surface of the skin, it creates a natural moisturiser which acts as a protective barrier against bacteria.
2. Heat regulation – body temperature is maintained in healthy humans at 37oC (98.6oF). organs involved in heat production are muscles, liver and digestive organs. Heat is absorbed and maintained in the subcutaneous layer of adipose tissue. Heat regulation is controlled in the following ways:
• Cooling
Vasodilation: when the body becomes hot, the capillaires dilate allowing
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When the body is cold, the skin via the nerve endings sends this message to the brain, thus the body. The process of warming known as vasoconstriction occurs. As one of the skin’s function being heat regulation, this functoin relies on the nerve endings in the skin to alert the brain to the harsh changes that may occur in one’s environment. To maintain homeostasis when the body is suffereing form hypothermia, the blood capillaries redirect the blood from the body’s extremeties to the major organs. With the blood diverted to the deeper parts of the body, the capillaries contract as do the pores. As a result, the skin appears pale and heat loss is inhibited. The nerve endings running through skin helps the skin to affectively act as a part of the body’s defence system. With the neurons controlling the beating of the heart transporting oxygen and nutrients to the body’s major organs is vital when someone is hypothermic. The nerve endings in the the skin alert the brain to the harsh surroundings, thus alerting the skin and circulatory system to regulate the body temperature allowing vasoconstriction to occur. Furthermore, the erector pili muscles contract, causing body hair to stand on end, trapping air against the surface of the skin, which is then warmed by body heat. Shivering occurs, caused by rapid and repeated muscle contractions which work to raise the body …show more content…
Using table format, show four examples of viral, bacterial and fungal diseases.
Viral Bacterial Fungal

A small horny tumour found on the skin, often on fingers and thumbs. Caused by viral infection. Highly contagious. Impetigo
A bacterial infection causing thinroofed blisters which weap and leave a thick yellow crust. Is highly contagious. Tinea corporis
Infection which attaches itself to keratinised structures such as the skin. Tinea corporis is commonly known as ringworm and can be found anywhere on the body. Highly contagious.
Warts found on the feet. Highly contagious. Scarlet fever
A bacterial illness that presents with a distinctive rash made up of tiny pinkish red spots that cover the whole body. Is contagious. Tinea pedis
Infection which attaches itself to keratinised structures such as the skin. Tinea pedis is commonly known as athlete’s foot. Highly contagious.
Herpes simplex
A viral infection commonly known as cold sores; not confined to the mouth, can spread over the face and to other parts of the body also. Appears as small blisters which if left alone will dry up leaving a crust which falls off. Highly contagious when active.

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