• Question: How come the skin is very sensitive?

    Asked by Mariha to Andy, Tatiana on 26 Jun 2015.
    • Photo: Tatiana Trantidou

      Tatiana Trantidou answered on 26 Jun 2015:

      The skin is the largest organ in our body. It has millions of receptors in it, which makes it extremely sensitive to mechanical and thermal stimulation. This means that we can detect very subtle changes in texture (mechanical stimulation) and temperature (thermal stimulation). Human skin contains many different types of cells (neurons and sensory cells) that provide the brain with detailed information about mechanical stimuli (light touch, strong pressure and touch, pain/itch/temperature). These receptors convert the mechanical or thermal stimulus into an electrical signal that travels to the brain. The brain then analyses the signal and determines how your body should react (remove your hand from a hot surface for example).