by Ingrid Lihan
Posted on Friday 12th of December 2008
Understanding the properties of the skin and caring for your skin can prevent skin acne to a large extent. Internal metabolic factors also contribute to skin problems.
Though skin acne is a superficial affliction, the amount of social embarrassment and negative cosmetic value it brings along is significant. Understanding your skin and its properties will go a long way in addressing your skin acne as well as preventing recurrence. The following are the five major properties of the skin.
1. An important shield
Skin acts as an important shield placed on the outermost part of our body, preventing microorganisms and harmful substances from gaining entry into the body. It also helps control loss of water and blood, so essential to sustain life, the body tissues are protected from injury and the body temperature is regulated through perspiration. In addition to all these, the skin also protects us from the harmful UV rays from the sun.
2. Changes constantly
The skin comprises of several cells and structures with specialized characteristics and keeps changing constantly, though we do not notice it. Its function as a sensory organ helps us feel heat or cold and other changes in the environment. Several million nerve cells under the skin help us react to situations or emotions.
3. Sensitive organ needing care
The skin is a very sensitive organ and we need to keep it fit and healthy apart from protecting against potential infection. The skin can also be affected by a variety of metabolic changes inside the body like hormonal changes during adulthood, or menstrual cycles in women. Skin acne can be largely attributed to these hormonal changes.
4. Structure of the skin
The skin has a three layered structure comprised of ‘epidermis, dermis and subcutaneous tissue’. The thinnest layer on the outermost surface is epidermis, with the dermis beneath. These layers have a significant role in the formation of skin acne due to the presence of hair follicle, sweat glands and the sebaceous glands. Blood vessels and nerves pass through these layers making the skin sensitive to itching, pain, and temperature. Several thousand cells are comprised under each square inch of the skin and holds oil glands, sweat glands, blood vessels as well as nerve ends. The epidermis acts as a protective layer and is quite tough. Melanin, the pigment which lends color to the skin is also held by epidermis. Blackheads or dark color is also caused by Melanin. In comparison to light skinned people, dark skinned people will have more melanin in the skin.
5. Categories of the skin
Normal skin, oily skin and dark skin are the three categories. Sub categories are combination skins, aging skins, mature skins, sensitive skins and acne prone skins. When the skin is acne prone, you will notice pimples and blackheads. This type of skin also tends to be oily. These blackheads or pimples, when left uncared can progress to an ugly stage with the skin getting pitted and scarred. If you are already afflicted with skin acne, you should exercise greater care for your skin and be selective in your good as well as cosmetics. After all, prevention is better than cure isn’t it?
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