Roughly 80% of the body's epidermal cells are made of keratinocytes, composed of soft protein keratin. The epidermal cells are born in the lowest layer of the epidermis, the basal layer. As these cells rise toward the outer layer, they undergo many changes, including the increase in the amount of keratin they produce. By the time the cells reach the top, they are no longer alive, and are formed entirely of keratin.
Dry skin is recognizable by its tight, rough feel and its dull appearance; it is apparent in its upper-most layer, the epidermis.
Keratin needs water to keep it pliable and healthy; when there is not enough water, the keratin crumbles and the cells can't stay together. This is what happens when the skin becomes dry. When the water content of your skin drops below ten percent, it gets rough, chaps, and scales. The skin's surface normally contains 10%-20% water. When there's too little water in the outermost layer, it loses flexibility, itches and may crack. In order to keep this from happening, a way must be found to keep water trapped in the skin, keeping the keratin healthy.
If you're like most people, your personal cleansing and bathing habits probably grew out of your childhood and teenage years. For most of us that means frequent baths and showers, deodorant soaps, and a variety of facial cleansers. But if you have dry skin, those habits and products may be one of the main reasons why your skin is in such poor shape. These habits can strip your skin of the scanty amounts of moisture and oil that it has. Here are some steps to take, which can restore moisture and suppleness to your skin:
Signs of Type 1 Diabetes, as it progresses, may include dry skin, blurred vision, unexplained weight loss and a thin, malnourished appearance.
Exceptionally dry skin has been associated with mercury toxicity.
Chapped lips and dry skin, which may be early symptoms, will occur in a majority of patients with vitamin A toxicity, particularly in dry weather.
Exercise increases blood flow and thus the supply of oxygen and nutrients to your skin.
Moisturizers improve skin hydration by providing a coating which reduces evaporative water loss.
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