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The Human Body
Those Crusty Scabs are Gross



Those Crusty Scabs are Gross
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   3.76

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    crisscross, double-yuk, reverse, shrink, clot, happen, substance, microscope, actually, especially, armor, gross, picking, underneath, loose, wound


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Those Crusty Scabs are Gross
By Joyce Furstenau
  

1     Accidents happen. Kids get hurt. Elbows get scraped and knees get cut. Ever spilled on gravel while riding your bike? Picking gravel out of a cut knee or your hand is no fun. When you cut yourself, you break the skin. Then you begin to bleed. Your body wants to stop the bleeding. It does this by forming a clot. There are little platelets (they actually look like little plates) in your blood that pile up when they come into contact with torn skin. These platelets release a special substance to stop the bleeding. The substance is called FIBRINOGEN. It makes something called FIBRIN to catch the loose blood cells. (Under a microscope, fibrin looks like the string that you spray out of a can.) Fibrin threads crisscross each other and form a kind of dam to trap the blood. This dam makes a solid plug, or clot. A clot that forms over a wound on the surface of your skin is called a scab.
 
2     After the scab is formed, it begins to shrink. This is weird. The shrinking skin squeezes out the watery parts of the clot and begins pulling the wound together. It's a little like a reverse tug-of-war. As the blood clot dries, it turns into a hard crust- a scab! Gross!
 
3     Underneath the scab, all kinds of things are still going on. Your body is making new skin cells. Your white blood cells are battling any bacteria that might have snuck in just in case you didn't clean your wound carefully. Sometimes you will see, double-yuk, pus underneath the scab. But, not to worry; your white blood cells came to your rescue. You see, they love to EAT dead body cells, especially bacteria. Pus is just a lot of dead white blood cells, dead skin cells and bacteria. In fact, your white blood cells think pus is, well, delightful. (Pus means your white blood cells are attacking infections present on or in your body.)

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The Human Body
             The Human Body



Health
    Alcohol  
 
    Bicycle Safety  
 
    Circulatory System  
 
    Digestive System  
 
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    Muscular System  
 
    Nervous System  
 
    Nutrition  
 
    Reproductive System  
 
    Respiratory System  
 
    Skeletal System  
 
    Teeth  
 
    The Five Senses  
 
    The Human Body  
 
    Tobacco  
 


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