For those living with diabetes, specific care routines are needed to keep the body healthy and functional. Skin complications are common among those with diabetes, and it is normal for someone affected to have one or multiple skin complications in their lifetime. However, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take care of your skin! Here are some tips to help manage skin conditions:
Skin Complications and Diabetes
People with diabetes are prone to developing a number of skin conditions, including bacterial and fungal infections, and itchy, dry skin. There are also many skin conditions specific to diabetes as well, including:
- Necrobiosis Lipodica, which is characterized by shiny skin, visible blood vessels, and swollen, hard, itchy skin.
- Acanthosis Nigricans, which causes the skin around the neck to darken and feel like velvet.
- Digital Sclerosis, in which the skin hardens around the hands and fingers.
- Diabetic Dermopathy, or “skin spots”. These spots appear mainly on the legs and can be mistaken for age spots.
- Eruptive Xanthomatosis: tender, pimple-like bumps that form on the skin.
- Diabetic Ulcers, which are caused by poor circulation and nerve damage.
Managing Skin Conditions
The best way to manage diabetic skin conditions is to manage your diabetes in general. Since people with high glucose levels have drier skin and are thus more susceptible to skin infections and complications. To help further prevent infection, it is important to avoid scalding hot or cold showers, letting cuts sit open, and stay in contact with your dermatologist.
Taking care of the feet is another crucial way to avoid skin complications since diabetes can cause swelling around the feet and ankles. By wearing wide, flat shoes, washing the feet regularly, and taking care of any cuts or blisters as soon as possible, avoiding skin infections will become easier.
General Skin Care
In general, there are quite a few ways to protect your skin without prescription medicines. Outside of managing your diabetes, moisturizing immediately after baths and showers can keep skin from drying out. When buying a moisturizer, consider ones that are “extra strength”. Keeping your living space humid is another great way to avoid drying out the skin. For places you spend most of your time in, consider buying a humidifier to help control a room’s humidity.
Your skincare routine should only consist of a few products since more variety can lead to more irritation. Consider asking your doctor what brand of moisturizers and cleansers they prefer. To browse skincare products especially for people with diabetes, visit the Medical Supply Depot.