What is Skin, Structure of Skin

Do you really know or want to know, "What is skin?" A comprehensive answer is that it is outer covering which protects all the delicate body parts lying underneath it.

It is the largest organ of our body which consists of several tissues including sweat glands, hair follicles, and Meissner's corpuscles. Our skin not only provides protection to the internal body parts, but also gives us our sense of touch.


Structure of Skin

Structure Of SkinConcerning the structure of skin, it is comprised of three main layers. The outermost layer is termed as the epidermis which is made up of numerous cells called Keratinocytes.

The epidermis acts as a barrier between our internal body parts and the external environment. Therefore, it is this layer of the skin which is responsible for preventing the entry of harmful foreign agents, such as bacteria, inside the body.

Moreover, it contains a layer of cells known as melanocytes which determines the color of the skin. Melanocytes contain a pigment, known as melanin, which imparts color to our skin.

People with more melanin have darker skin tones, whereas those with a smaller amount of melanin have a lighter skin color.

Lying beneath the epidermis is another layer of the skin, known as the dermis which contains hair follicles, sweat glands and sebaceous glands. The dermis is made up of important proteins, elastin and collagen.

Moreover, tiny blood capillaries are also found in this layer which provide a constant supply of oxygen and nutrients to the skin cells.

The skin's innermost layer is known as subcutis. This is where fat is deposited to act as an energy store as well as an insulator.

Functions of Skin

Skin is not just the largest, but also one of the most important organs of our body since it performs an array of various significant functions. Protecting the inner parts from diseases, regulating the body temperature, moisture retention, removal of toxins and Vitamin D production are some of the most important functions which are performed by the skin.

Diseases of Skin

The color of the skin signifies different types of skin conditions. Some of the skin diseases are visible through a color or some color patches which appear on the skin. Skin cancer, atopic dermatitis, psoriasis and acne are some of the common skin diseases which are discussed below at length.

About the Author

Posted by: M. Isaac / Senior writer

A graduate in biological sciences and a PhD scholar (NCBA&E University, Lahore), M. Isaac combines his vast experience with a keen and critical eye to create practical and inherently engaging content on the human body. His background as a researcher and instructor at a secondary school enables him to best understand the needs of the beginner level learners and the amateur readers and educate them about how their body works, and how they can adopt a healthier lifestyle.

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