Diabetes can have an effect on several parts of the body, and skin changes in diabetes are no exception. There are dozens of skin conditions linked to diabetes. In fact, skin problems are one of the first signs many people show before being diagnosed with the disease. Like other difficulties associated with this illness, skin changes in diabetes occur because of an unhealthy amount of glucose in the blood.

Sometimes people experience allergic reactions on their skin as a result of insulin injection. This is why it is so important for an insulin-dependent diabetic patient to be on the lookout for rashes or bumps around the portions of skin where the medicine is injected. Sometimes these reactions require emergency treatment if they are severe enough. If a person believes they are experiencing skin changes in diabetes due to medications they are taking, a health care provider should be consulted immediately.

Bacterial infections are also common in diabetics. These usually cause the skin to become hot, swollen, red and painful. Antibiotics can treat this kind of infection. Styes, boils and carbuncles are some of the most common bacterial infections experienced by diabetics who suffer with skin problems.

Fungal infections are another form of skin changes in diabetes. Candida albicans is a type of fungus that is normally present in the fungal infections of diabetics. Itchy red rashes and tiny blisters are a sign that a person may be experiencing this type of infection. Fungal infections commonly occur around the folds of the skin.

Diabetic dermopathy (sometimes called “skin spots”) occurs in diabetics as a result of the disease’s affect on small blood vessels that supply the epidermis with blood. This condition causes scaly patches to appear on the skin that are light brown or red in color. These patches do not hurt or itch, and treatment is usually not needed.


How to Prevent Skin Changes in Diabetes


If detected early enough, most skin changes in diabetes can be treated. There are also a few things a diabetic person can do to prevent experiencing problems with their skin. Good skin care is important for any person living with diabetes. The American Diabetes Association offers advice on taking care of skin to prevent diabetes skin changes.

First of all, skin should be kept clean and dry. Talcum powder should also be used in the folds of the body where skin comes into contact with other skin, such as the armpits and groin area. Regulating the skin’s contact with hot water is another way to reduce skin changes with diabetes. Lotion should be applied to the skin after showers and baths, but never between the toes as this can encourage the growth of fungus.

If skin becomes dry or irritated as a result of skin changes in diabetes, scratching should be avoided because it will open the skin up and make it susceptible to infection. Treating cuts right away is also essential for diabetics. Using mild shampoos and avoiding feminine hygiene sprays is also recommended for skin changes diabetes.