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Why your fingerprints are unique?

Welcome Detective,

Yeah , today you are a detective, cause we are gonna investigate… about FINGERPRINTS.

P.S:Wherever I use the term fingerprints, I intend to denote the fine ridges you have in your fingers, palms, soles, and toes, not just your fingers.

A fingerprint

…your fingerprint is the impression made by the friction ridges of your skin… Pic courtesy:Pixabay

I got hold of this topic yesterday , when I was in my class. The subject was Chemistry: For CRIME INVESTIGATION (oooh.. that’s an uncanny subject!!). This subject was solely my choice, I chose it , cause it felt,….cool. Ok enough blabbering, Let’s get on to the topic .

I was in my class and it was at first, just the usual, boring, BS, but… at one point the discussion touched upon the uniqueness of everybody’s finger prints. Everybody in the class didn’t take it seriously, they were I like, “Well, I already know this”.But to me, it kinda got stuck in my mind . I wasn’t able to rub it off with the usual excuse “I already know everything there is to know about this” , cause actually I don’t know a lot about it, and maybe you too….don’t.

SO GRAB A MAGNIFIER AND A HAT GUYS….. We are gonna investigate.

Each and every one of us have our own unique fingerprint, It’s not much unlike the AADHAR system (but with no shitty photographs..lol) .

Indian Flag themed fingerprint

Pic courtesy: pixabay

Even the most identical of the identical twins cannot have the same fingerprints. And also the fingerprint scheme in two of your own fingers won’t match even if they were of the same type (For example the right and the left index fingers of the same person won’t have the same prints).

Now get ready for a flashback…

When I was young and curious ( I am still young and curious), well when I was younger and much more curious, I’ve wondered about my fingerprints. I had always thought that these fingerprints went down deep into my skin , into my body and they represented the younger stages of me, i.e I thought they were remnants of my growth. To understand better use this analogy, “ Consider an onion, you know how it has multiple layers, it starts very small and as it grows layer upon layer get’s added to it“, the same way I thought I grew in layers and the fingerprints were it’s remnants!!! (Comment how many of you thought the same way, and If you have some other interesting theory comment it too)

Close up image of a cut onion

…My fingerprints reminded me of the layers of an onion… Pic courtesy:Pixabay

I was only part right , the appearance of these friction ridges (cause they help with your Grip) had something to do with my growth but it wasn’t the way I thought it would be. Actually the fingerprint you now have had already been decided even before you were born. You had your fingerprints completely ready around the time you were “-0.5” years old i.e when you were a six month fetus in your mom’s womb! And this process according to scientists starts even earlier at 10 weeks since your inception as a zygote.

…At -10 weeks old you were the size of a golf ball!… A golf ball about to reach its goal
Pic courtesy: Pexels

At -10 weeks old you would have been the size of a golf ball! And by the time you become a 6 month fetus you would have grown Six times your size and weigh an approximate 1 kilogram. So that’s a lot of growth! Your body was in a continuous growth streak    (relate: the fast growing, tip of a plant would always be soft). So your body is kind of really soft right now and the amniotic fluid ( The juice you happily floated on in your mom’s womb ) is really chaotic (i.e it has a lot going on ,with lots of motion). It seems much more chaotic when you couple the fact that the baby’s size was at this time really small (around 3 cm!!) .

This chaos shaped your epidermis (your skin’s external layer) that was already under a lot of strain along with the dermis (your skin’s internal layer) due to the relatively fast growing basal layer (your skin’s middle layer) which causes the epidermis to bend into  (I mean literally “into” ) the dermis. This bent epidermis is what gets shaped into those ridges by factors like pressure, movement inside the amniotic fluid.

So these fingerprints are not just superficial ,they go deep into the third layer of your skin. That’s why people working in hard environments and criminals who destroyed these ridges by burning their hands will soon have their ridges recovered , once lenient situation dawns .(CRIMINALS ….. Get back to using Gloves).

Now for the reason everyone’s finger prints are unique is that the amniotic fluid is so chaotic that there is barely any chance for two individuals to have the same fingerprint. No two individuals would have experienced the exact same pressure at the exact same time and would have done the exact same thing and would have been at the exact same place at the exact same time , inside the holy grail, their mother’s womb. Here Probability plays on our side ( don’t confuse Possibility with probability). It is just not possible ,the possible different finger prints are innumerable that there are barely any humans to have had the same finger prints.

SUMMARY:

  • Everybody has their own unique fingerprint,
  • Don’t even identical twins have the exact same fingerprint,
  • Even the same person will not have the same print in two of his fingers,
  • A baby would have completely gotten it’s finger prints by the time it is a 6 month fetus,
  • The development of fingerprints depend on the pressure of the amniotic fluid, the movement of the baby and the total chaos in the amniotic fluid,
  • The relatively faster growth of the basal layer too played an important role.

Take the analogy of a sculpture,

If you consider the bent epidermis ( due to strain from the basal layer) as the stone to be sculpted , in this case into your fingerprint then the factors like the pressure of the amniotic fluid were the chisels that shaped it into your beautiful finger print.

 

P.S: Fingerprint is nothing but the impression of the ridges in your skin made willingly (as in legal documents), or unwillingly ,as in crime scenes. For relative ease I have used the term fingerprint even though the correct terminology would have been, friction ridges (cuz, you can’t question me , it’s my blog)

P.P.S: The P.S at the beginning of the article is the Pre.script and the P.S above is the Post.Script.

I intend to make sequels to this post , so stay tuned folks.

Comment what you think of this post.

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