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Functions of Skin

  1. Protection: Covers the entire body & protects all the tissues and organs underneath. It is also known as Barrier function. It acts as a
    1. Mechanical: Protects from blows, impact, injuries, etc. Acts as a mechanical barrier.
    2. Chemical: Prevents external chemicals & tries to neutralise it. Acts as a permeability barrier & as a barrier to the chemicals.
    3. Thermal:
      1. The presence of fat in the subcutaneous layer, acts as an insulator & prevents body heat loss.
      2. Produces sweat during high atmospheric temperature to cool the body in order to protect from heat.
      3. Arrector pili muscle contracts & protects from extreme cold from outside.
    4. Radiation: Protects against harmful rays. Eg. UV rays.
    5. Biological: Penetration of microorganisms.
  2. Sensation: Nerve endings which are present at the dermis layer provide thermal, tactile & pain sensatioins.
  3. Secretion:
    1. Sweat is secreted by eccrine glands.
    2. Scent/body odour is secreted by apocrine glands.
    3. Sebum is secreted by sebaceous glands.
  4. Synthesis: Helps in synthesis of Vit. D.
  5. Excretion:  Excretes toxins, salts & urea via sweat
  6. Immunological Functions: Plays an important role in host defence. Keratinocytes & Langerhanns cells in the epidermis & T lymphocytes in the dermis are involved in the immune mechanism.
  7. Aesthetic Function: Improves the visual appeal for social & sexual communication.


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