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  • Level: GCSE
  • Subject: Science
  • Essay length: 3744 words

There are many things that affect the human body and attack its defence systems,they can be naturally occouring in the environment or self inflicted or caused by societys pollution of our planet.

Extracts from this essay...

Introduction

There are many things that affect the human body and attack its defence systems,they can be naturally occouring in the environment or self inflicted or caused by societys pollution of our planet. Below are some conditions, with the effects that they cause to the human body and its defence mechanisms. Alcohol consumption is a health issue which affects the vast majority. A great many people drink alcohol regularly. Although they may not be alcoholic in the sense of being addicted to alcohol, they neverthelesss expose themselves to health risks. The alcohol in wines, beers and spirits is a depressant of the central nervous system. Small amounts gives a sense of well-being, with a realease from anxiety. However, this is accompanied by a fall-of in performance in any activity requiring skill. It also gives a misleading sense of confidence.The drunken driver usually thinks he or she is driving very well. Even a small amount of alcohol in the blood increases our reaction time. In some people, the reaction time is doubled even when the alcohol in the blood is well below the legal limit laid down for car drivers. This can make a big differenece in the time needed for a driver to apply the brakes after seeing a hazard. Alcohol reduces inhibitations and it can lead to irresponsible behaviour such as vandalism and aggression. Alcohol causes vaso-dilation in the skin, giving sense of warmth but in fact leading to a greater loss of body heat. A concentration of 500mg of alcohol in 100 cubic cm of blood results unconsciousness. More than this will kill, by stopping the action of the breathing centre in the brain. High doses of alcohol can harm virtually every organ in humans body. Many of these effects are reversible with abstinence, others are not.(2) Esophagus. Alcohol is associated with nearly half of the cancers of the esophagus, mouth, and larynx.

Middle

On the other hand, in protected skin the vessels tend not to be so dilated or damaged. As its worst, skin that has been over-exposed to the sun for many years looks like old leather. Constant exposure to UV light over many years can result in warty spots on the skin, called actinic keratoses. The appearance of actinic keratoses means that the skin has received far too much sun and could develop a skin cancer eventually.(4) There are three main types of cancer: Basal cell carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer. The skin is formed of three layers. The deepest, the subcutaneous layer, is composed of fat and connective tissue and connects the skin to the underlying muscle. Above that is the dermis, the layer that containssweat glands, oil glands, and other structures of the skin. The third layer, on the surface is called the epidermis; it is there that most skin cancers arise. Basal cell carcinomas arise in the lowest of the epidermis, the basal cell layer. This type of cancer can have many different appearances: a red patch or irritated area; a small, pink pearly bump, a white or yellow scar-like area; a smooth growth with a dent in the center, or an open sore that bleeds or oozes. Basal cell carcinomas rarely spread throughout the body and death from them very rare; however, because they often occur on the face, their locally destructive effects can result in serious cosmetic deformity if not diagnosed and treated early. Squamous cell carcinoma arise from the upper levels of the epidermis, usually on places that have been exposed to the sun. Squamous cell carcinomas are most commonly found on the ears, the face, and the mouth. This type of skin cancer often arises from a precancerous lesion known as an actinic keratosis, a type of lesion that appears as a rough, flat pink spot.

Conclusion

In smaller amounts it can put people at risk by interfering with their ability to recognize and avoid cold-weather dangers. In larger amounts it shuts the body's heat-balancing mechanisms. Secondary hypothermia is often a threat to the elderly, who may be on medications or suffering from illnesses that affect their ability to conserve heat. Malnutrition and immobility can also put the elderly at risk.(12) The signs and symptomps of hypothermia follow a typical course, thought the body temperatures at which they occur vary from person to person depending on age, health, and other factors. The impact of hypothermia on the nervous system often becomes apparent quite early. Coordination may begin to suffer as soon as body temperature reaches 35 degrees. The early signs of hypothermia also include cold and pale skin and intensive shivering; the latter stops between 32.2 and 30 degrees. As body temperature continues to fall, speech becomes slurred, the muscles go rigid, and the victim becomes disoriented and experiences eyesight problems. Other harmful consequences include dehydration as well as liver and kidney failure. Heart rate, respiratory rate, and blood pressure rise during the first stages of hypothermia, but fall once the 32.2 degrees mark is passed. Below 30 degrees most victims are comatose, and below 27.8 degrees the heart's rhythm becomes dangerously disordered. Yet even at very low body temperatures, people can survive for several hours and be succesfully revived, thought they may be appear to be dead.(12) People who spend time outdoors in cold weather can reduce heat loss by wearing their clothing loosely and in layers and by keepimg their hands, feet, and head well covered. Because water draws heat away from the body so easily, staying dry is important. Alcohol should be avoided because it promotes heat loss by expanding the blood vessels that carry body blood to the skin. Alcohol consumption, exposure to ultra violet light and cold injurys have harmful effects on our body and its defence mechanisms. It affects virtually all areas of a person's life; socially, psychologically, physiologically and mentally. It can be easily avoided by using just a little common sense.

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