The skin is the external covering of our bodies. It is one of the largest organs in the body. It has several layers and each layer has its own specialized function – there are about seven in all. All over the skin are structures called hair follicles seven though this is not immediately apparent. The skin is in direct contact with the external environment.
For this reason, it is intimately connected with the defense systems of the body. The skin offers protection against disease-causing microorganisms, regulates hydration via water loss. It also takes part in insulation, production of vitamin D, provides for the sensory functions of the body. The skin is also a component of the body’s system of temperature regulation and provides skin color in the form of pigmentation.
How Long Does It Take For Skin To Grow Back?
Under ideal conditions, if there is a deep cut, the skin can fully regrow in just a couple of weeks to about six weeks. That said, it must be pointed out that the time that it takes for the skin to grow back depends on a lot of factors. These include:
Nature of the Injury
It is quite understandable that the time it takes for the skin to regrow depends on the nature and extent of the injury. Age plays a major factor as well. If it is just a superficial scratch, the skin can grow back in a matter of days. But if it is a cut or injury that is much deeper and cuts through two or more layers in the skin, then it can take weeks before the skin can grow back. The deeper the cut or injury, the longer it is going to take to grow back.
Healing of a wound is directly dependent on the nature of the structure of the skin itself. Generally, there are four phases of wound healing. The first is hemostasis where the bleeding is stopped with the formation of special connective tissues. The second phase is inflammation and that is when the body mobilizes its defense factors. This stage is dependent on the immune system.
The third phase is the proliferation of connective tissue and it commences about 48 to 72 hours after the injury to the skin. The last stage of wound healing is the one called remodeling. At this stage, there is the formation and deposition of a protein called collagen. This final stage can actually take months even more than a year before everything is fully consolidated.
Form of Treatment of Medical Attention
If there is early medical attention, the skin is going to grow back much faster. This is much different in the scenario where there is no qualitative healthcare system.
Eating meals that contain nutrients that are good for the skin hastens the process of healing. Malnutrition slows or delays the growing back of the skin.
Additional Methods of Healing Used
There are some cases where some other substances can be used to speed up the healing process. A very potent substance in this regard is pure, natural honey. However, it is best used under professional supervision. It is very good for wounds or injuries that are caused by infections or diseases like diabetes. Professional help must be sought before making use of honey or any other natural product to speed up the process.
Immune System of the Subject
The immune system is directly connected to the speed and quality of healing of the skin tissue. In people with immunocompromised conditions like certain viral infections or those on steroids or chemotherapy, the skin can regrow only slowly. A very relevant example here is the case of patients with human immunodeficiency virus.
It can be very frustrating when you have a cut or wound on your skin and it refuses to heal. Whichever part of your body is affected, you may be worried. These injuries can come from burns, cuts from sharp objects, blunt force trauma or even infections.
The duration needed for skin to grow back depends a lot on the nature of the injury in the first place. This is also directly linked to the skin structure. There are three prominent layers in the skin. These are the epidermis, the dermis, and the hypodermis. The time it will take for skin to regrow will depend on which of these layers are affected.
Of all these layers, the epidermis is the outermost. It is the part that offers protection from external substances like water, dust and so on. It also protects against infections and so on. There are no blood vessels like capillaries in the epidermis. It depends on air for its oxygen requirements and diffusion from the dermis.
The dermis lies below the epidermis. It is within the dermis that the connective tissue is present. It is linked deeply to the epidermis via a membrane. The dermis is very rich in nerve endings and that is why it is the part that detects touch and heat stimuli. It is also the dermis that contains the sweat glands, sebaceous glands, hair follicles, apocrine glands, lymphatic and the blood vessels.
The skin can be damaged in several ways and when it happens, the skin tries to correct the defect by trying to create scar tissue. The scar tissue can be quite prominent as it is of a different color, texture and overall appearance from the other parts of the skin.
Factors Affecting Skin Regrowth
After the skin has been injured, there are factors that affect the rate of the regrowth of the skin tissue. These include:
The stronger your immune system, the faster and easier it is for the skin to heal and regrow. There are some conditions where the immune system can be depressed. These include diseases like human immunodeficiency virus or some forms of malignancies. Some medications can also depress the immune system of the body. When this happens, the rate of the skin regrowth is slowed down.
Diet and Nutrition: How What You Eat Affects Your Skin Regrowth
This should not come as a surprise at all. The skin is a very integral part of the body and it is affected by diet and nutrition. There are some foods, meals or nutrients that can assist in the regrowth process. Recollect that the skin itself under normal condition regrows and replaces itself. These foods help in stimulating and optimizing that process.
Vitamin C-rich foods
Top on the list of these foods is vitamin-C rich ones like the citrus family of fruits. Foods that are rich in vitamin C are very good at assisting the skin to regrow. This is because when the skin is healing, it makes use of a substance called collagen. This collagen is a protein that constitutes a significant part of the skin.
However, before the collagen is produced or synthesized, there has to be vitamin C present. That is why consuming meals that are rich in vitamin C helps. Collagen is synthesized and deposited that stimulates the growth of new skin cells that grow where the injury had occurred. Vitamin C is not only helpful in the growth of new skin cells but also for others like scar tissue, ligaments, tendons, and blood vessels. Ligaments, tendons and scar tissue are all examples of connective tissue.
Foods that are rich in vitamin C include citrus fruits like oranges, grapefruits, and leafy green vegetables. These foods can be consumed raw without any further processing like boiling or frying. Another option that can be explored is to turn these foods into juice which can then be ingested.
It is better to take these foods raw or in the juice form because if they are further processed, many of the nutrients can be lost. Other foods that you can take include spinach, tomatoes, potatoes, kiwi fruit, peppers, and cabbage. All of them contain vitamin C and all help in speeding up the healing and repair of skin after damage.
Vitamin A-rich foods
Still, on foods that can help the skin grow, there are also vitamin-A rich foods. This is very possible because vitamin A is a very important antioxidant. The skin makes use of it during the healing process. It can also assist in fighting infections and taking part in inflammation. Vitamin A also stimulates the production of collagen, the important substance mentioned earlier. However, vitamin A-rich foods or supplements should be taken only in the recommended amounts. Overdosing on vitamin A is definitely not a good idea at all.
Foods that are very rich in vitamin A are eggs, vegetables that are yellow or orange like carrots, fish, dark green leafy vegetables, spinach, whole milk and so on. Foods rich in proteins are also equally good in assisting the healing and regrowth process. These include lean meats, fish, eggs, chicken, turkey, soy protein products and yogurt.
Other foods like nuts, oysters, red meats, seafood, bread and whole grains that have a lot of zinc are also very good. They help massively in the repair, healing, and maintenance of skin tissue too.