The Skin: from Growth to Healing Process
In this paper I am going to discuss many different topics related to our skin. When discussing the skin. a good place to start is the different layers of the skin. The skin has three different layers: the epidermis, the dermis and the subcutaneous tissue(Brannon 2007) . These three layers play a very important role in how our skin grows and how it heals after injury. The epidermis is the outer layer of skin.
The thickness of the epidermis varies in different types of skin. It is the thinnest on the eyelids at . 5 mm and the thickest on the palms and soles at 1. 5 mm(Brannon 2007). There are five different layers to the epidermis. The bottom layers, which are shaped like columns, divide and push already formed cells into higher layers of the epidermis(Brannon 2007). Once the cells reach the top layer, which is made up of dead cells, our body sheds the top layer (Brannon 2007). This process happens approximately every two weeks. The Dermis which can also vary in thickness, like the epidermis, depending on the location on the body(Brannon 2007).
The Dermis is different from the epidermis in that it is composed of tissues and not layers. The final layer of the skin is the Subcutaneous Tissue. This layer consists of fat and connective tissue that houses larger blood vessels and nerves (Brannon 2007). This layer of skin is extremely different than the first two layers because not only does the size of the layer depend on the location on the body, but also from person to person (Brannon 2007).
The skin can be affected by many different things. one of theses being disease. There are many different types of diseases that can affect the kin. The research that I have collected focuses on diseases that are most common in children and young adults. They are: ringworm of the scalp and body, acne vulgaris, impetigo contagiosa, herpes simplex, warts, pediculosis, alopecia areata, carbuncles and boils, eczema, psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis and dermatitis venenata (Bernard 2012). In this article Mr. Bernard discusses the importance that should be placed on our educators to know the tell-tell signs of when a student presents a symptom that should cause them to be isolated.
This can save other children from catching the disease(which most commonly can be cured with over the counter drugs). One of the most common diseases among children and young adults is atopic dermatitis, more commonly known as eczema (Bernard 2012). This disease is more of an inconvenience and annoyance than life threatening. The symptoms can cause the skin to become sensitive, itchy and very It may cause the skin to become red (Bernard 2012). Parvovirus which is very contagious and is a common skin disease in children(Bernard 2012).
The symptoms include typical facial rashes which may spread to the rest of the body. This lasts for around three weeks, along with itching and fever as well as a sore throat(Bernard 2012). The thing to be most aware of is hives. According to Mr. Bernard, hives can be life threatening and cause breathing complications(Bernard 2012). Like I stated earlier in this paragraph, there are many different skin disease that can be maintained and sometimes cured by over the counter medications.
This is not always the case, it all depends on the severity of the disease and how soon it was diagnosed. Unlike skin diseases there are even more infections that can affect the skin. Some of these are Impetigo, Ecthyma, Cellulitis, Necrotizing Fasciitis, Candidiasis and Warts. The one thing all of these infections have in common are the symptoms are extremely visible. On the other hand, infections like Necrotizing Fasciitis can affect your body and not just your skin. Although this infection starts on the skin, if not treated quickly it can lead to gangrene(Bernard 2012).
Gangrene, if not caught in time can spread through the blood stream and could potentially be fatal. Most of the infections listed above must be treated by parenteral antibiotics(Bernard 2012). Depending on the severity and how long the infection goes without being diagnosed, some of these infections have a mortality rate of 70%(Bernard 2012). So far in this paper I have discussed the layers of the skin, diseases of the skin and infections of the skin. The only thing left to discuss is the healing of the skin after dealing with a chronic wound.
The first thing that happens after a injury occurs to the skin is inflammation (Cunningham 2008). After the inflammation dies down, this is when the scabbing process begins(Cunningham 2008). Finally, the maturation phase occurs where collagen fibers become more organized, blood vessels are restored to normal, the scab is shed, and the epidermis is restored to normal thickness(Cunningham 2008). Although the healing process is pretty self explanatory, there are a few things that can affect it.
These include low blood oxygen content, infection, lack of perfusion, sustained pressure, patient malnutrition, systemic disease such as diabetes and treatments such as immunosuppressants (Cunningham 2008). Some of these issues can affect how the skin heals, not all of them can be life threatening. To summarize, the skin goes through a variety of phases from growth to the healing process. These phases include the growth of the skin, diseases of the skin, infections of the skin and the healing of the skin. I learned a lot from the material I collected and I believe that you will as well.