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Defense Mechanisms of the Human Body

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The physical barriers of the skin include things such as the skin, tears, mucus, mucus membranes and also stomach acid. You have beneficial bacteria that grows on your skin, your bowel and other places in the body that’s main function is to stop bad bacteria from taking over your body. Also, the flow of urine would wash out microorganisms that may enter the urinary tract. These are the first line of defence that helps us fight or prevent infection as they are useful in preventing invading pathogens and also keeping things to the body that are harmful out, and keeping the things our body needs to function within the body.

To be able to prevent eye infections, us as humans, have developed chemicals that exist within our tears that are called lysozymes. Isozymes are enzymes that are able to destroy bacteria cells by gradually breaking down their cell walls in the bacteria. Lysozymes are chemicals so, just like stomach acid, they are known to be a form of chemical defence that fight against infection.

The nonspecific defenses would protect us from infection and diseases by surrounding the pathogens and destroying them. Sometimes it is said that the phagocyte immerses the pathogen, and then would destroy it. This very process’ name is phagocytosis. WBC (white blood cell) also makes chemicals that are used to cause a fever.

Antibodies break down or prevent us from disease more methodically and slowly then usual. They use antigens which are proteins that are found on the outer surface of the pathogen. The antibodies are used so that they can destroy the antigen which is then powerfully surrounded and digested by macrophages. WBC are also able to produce chemicals that are called antitoxins which destroy the toxicants certain bacterias produce when they have invaded the body.

All of these 4 defence mechanisms are quite effective as they all are able to stop or are mainly able to prevent diseases. I believe the most effective one is the antibodies, because although you need to be immune to the disease and be infected by it once, your body would not feel the effects of it again. The physical barriers and the specific defenses are quite similar in a sense as they both rely on the physical body as opposed to the antibodies and nonspecific defenses which are more reliant from within the body.

A vaccine is a substance that is used to quicken up the production of antibodies. This would also be able to provide the immunity against one or many possible diseases, caused by a disease, the products of the disease, or a synthetic substitute, that would subsequently be treated to act as an antigen without inducing the disease. First of all, no vaccine is fully effective. Usually to make vaccines that are safer than the disease itself, the bacteria or virus is killed or usually weakened. For reasons that are related to the individual, not all vaccinated people are able to develop immunity. Most routine childhood vaccines are effective for most of the recipients. The case study for the vaccination shows that once the vaccination first came out, there were 275 cases per 100,000 people. The next year it dropped by 42 to 233 per 100,000 people. Then from there it would usually drop and go up a lot. This is to show that they are more cases. There is also usually an increase in the amount of people over 65 that are vaccinated also increase every year.

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There are multiple advantages to sweating. These could be things such as losing weight and maintaining a healthy weight, defending against multiple diseases and lastly things such as improving your mood and also promoting and helping you to get good sleep. Excessively sweating can be very bad for your psychological state of mind more than the physical state of your body.

An advantage of crying and releasing tears is that reflex tears clear debris, like smoke and dust, from your eyes. Continuous tears lubricate your eyes and help protect them from infection. Emotional tears may have many health benefits. Whereas continuous tears contain 98% water, emotional tears contain stress hormones and other toxins. A disadvantage(s) of crying is that when you are crying too much, many people will experience a runny nose, bloodshot eyes or swelling around the eyes and general puffiness in the face.

A runny or stuffed-up nose is a pain, but that extra mucus helps your body stay healthy. Mucus is an important substance the body produces to protect itself from viruses and bacteria. Mucus keeps parts of your body from drying out. Why mucus may be bad is during an infection, the mucus contains the viruses or bacteria responsible for the infection as well as infection-fighting cells of the body’s immune system (white blood cells). Mucous membranes also protect the body from itself; for instance mucosa in the stomach protects it from stomach acid, and mucosa lining the bladder protects the underlying tissue from urine. Too much of it is bad as you may start to feel upsets where there is too big of a build up of mucus.

The main and sole focus of health screening programmes is mainly to be able to tell whether someone is at risk of a certain disease or whether someone has risk factors of something. This will be able to allow doctors, nurses and/or GPs to come up with plans that allows them to come up with a plan to make it less likely for someone to be affected by that disease. An advantage to doing a screening is that if a problem is detected early, then it is easier for you to treat it, and it is a lot less likely for you to get serious underlying health condition that may include things such as: cancer, Downs syndrome, phenylketonuria (PKU) and atherosclerosis. Cancer screening would usually involve testing the healthiness of a person and also testing for signs of the disease. It can save lives by finding cancers at an early stage, or even preventing them. Screening is not the same as the tests a person may have when doctors are diagnosing or treating cancer.

In my opinion, this is effective to an extent because although it is able to save many people’s lives each year and is able to detect tumors that may be growing inside of a person from the part which is affected. However, for this to be effective, it needs to be spotted early and a lot of the time for this to be effective. Also, a lot of the time, it may not be serious or as serious and it would give people tensions that are not necessary. Advantages to the screening programmes made specifically for cancer is that it saves thousands of lives. If cancer is picked up from an early stage, it is easier and better for treatment and more people are able to survive. Certain screenings also save you from cancer. Disadvantages to the screening for cancer may be things like it leading to unnecessary worry and possible anxiety where there may be no cancer actually present in the system. Any positive results may actually result in more anxiety by a very slow diagnosing tumor that may actually never cause harm or have any harmful side effects.

Vaccination is never meant to be 100% effective. It is not designed so you never get that disease. It is designed so that it is safer than the actual disease itself, the virus is either killed or weakened. This is to do with the individual person itself as not all vaccinations are able to create immunity. Most routine childhood vaccines are effective for 85% to 95% of recipients. The benefits of having a screening test and screening programmes include: 1) finding out about a problem early can mean that treatment is more effective as you can take steps; 2) finding out you have a health problem or an increased risk of a health problem can help people make better informed decisions about their health. A screening programme must include all the core components in the screening process from inviting the target population to accessing effective treatment for individuals diagnosed with disease.


  1. Nicky Thomas (2012). BTEC Applied Science: Principles of Science. United Kingdom: Edexcel. 200.
  2. NHS. NHS website

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Defense Mechanisms of the Human Body. (2022, August 25). Edubirdie. Retrieved September 27, 2023, from
“Defense Mechanisms of the Human Body.” Edubirdie, 25 Aug. 2022,
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