Q:

How much skin do we shed in a day?

A:

Quick Answer

Humans lose between 30,000 and 40,000 skin cells every hour. During a 24-hour period, a person loses almost a million skin cells. The human body is made up of roughly 10 trillion cells in total, 1.6 trillion of which are skin cells.

Know More
How much skin do we shed in a day?
Credit: Iwan Gabovitch CC-BY 2.0

Full Answer

Human skin is composed of several layers, and the outer layer is called the epidermis, which is composed of cells made of keratin called keratinocytes. Keratinocytes are formed in the lower level of the epidermis, which bonds with the second skin layer called the dermis. The new skin cells slowly push their way up to the top epidermal layer, where they die. The top layer is called the stratum corneum. Eventually, the dead cells break away from the epidermis and fall off, making room for newer cells to come up from below.

It takes approximately one month for new skin cells to make their way up to the top layer. This means that the skin a person had the month before is composed of completely different skin cells from the ones he has in the current month. The dust that collects on tables, shelves, window ledges and other areas of the home is made mostly from dead human skin cells.

Learn more in Organs

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are the major organs in the excretory system?

    A:

    The major organs of the excretory system are the skin, the lungs, the kidneys, the liver, the urinary system and the large intestine. These organs function to eliminate waste and excess materials from the body, but the excretory system doesn't have a formal anatomical classification.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the function of the stratum granulosum?

    A:

    The stratum granulosum functions as the waterproofing layer of the skin that prevents fluid loss, according to the Loyola University Medical Education Network. Keratin accumulates in this layer by a process that forms a thicker layer of skin cells to protect less dense cells underneath. Lipids and keratin organize as flat skin cells without their nuclei, according to Dr. Heather Brannon for About.com.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Is there such thing as a black eye?

    A:

    Black eyes are caused by bleeding underneath the skin due to blunt impact. The skin underneath the eyes is thinner, so blood pooling in the area is more obvious than in other areas, giving the distinctive shine to a black eye.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What are the four organs of excretion?

    A:

    The four organs of excretion are the kidneys, the lungs, the skin and the liver. Excretion is the process of elimination of toxic waste products and substances in excess of requirements from the human body.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore