We all are very much aware of skin problems with diabetes. Diabetes is diagnosed when there are high levels of sugar in the blood, this can be due to insufficient levels of insulin or the body is not responding well to the insulin (here the insulin levels in the blood are within normal limits. Persistent high levels of blood sugars, affect all the body systems and definitely affects the skin too.

Skin being the visible organ of the body, we are able to see and observe the effects right in the beginning. Many times diabetes is diagnosed from the skin problem. This is well known to all, that skin infections or any injury takes a long time to heal in diabetics. When an infection or injury takes longer to heal, everyone around starts to advice to get blood sugar levels tested. Many times skin problems with diabetes are first diagnosed. Already existing skin problems with diabetes get aggravated with uncontrolled high blood sugars. The skin disorders may manifest for the first time after the onset of diabetes. It is recommended to consult a skin doctor for any skin infections. Dr Jastinder Gill is one of the expert skin doctors in Ludhiana.

Unveiling the Complexities: Skin Problems with Diabetes

Nerve Damage and Skin Vulnerability

Nerve damage results in decreased perception of pain, a person is unable to feel the hot or cold temperature or pain from an injury. Hence more prone to injuries and skin damage in form of blisters/ulcers, commonly seen are foot injuries and pressure sores.

Immune System Compromise and Susceptibility to Infections

Altered immune system, makes diabetics more prone to all kinds of infections, which can be bacterial, viral or fungal. Bacterial infections in the form of styes (infection at the eyelids), boils and folliculitis (which is infection of the hair follicles). Out of the fungal infections, the most common is jocker’s itch and athlete’s foot. Body folds (underarms, inner thighs or groin area) which  remain warm and moist are more prone to fungal infections and more specifically yeast/candida infection. Infection of nail folds and nails is commonly seen in housewives and in those where the hands or feet remain constantly wet.

Persistent Itching: A Diagnostic Clue to Diabetes

Diabetes is one of the leading causes of itching on any part of the body, but more so in the private areas. Many times diabetes is diagnosed for the first time, when someone complains of persistent itching, which is not relieved despite regular treatment.

Dermatopathic Manifestations and Severe Damage

Diabetic dermopathy, these are light brown spots, commonly seen on the shins, because of damage to small blood vessels. A more severe form of damage is seen a s digital sclerosis, tips of fingers and toes become thick, tight and wax like.

Acanthosis nigricans

Acanthosis nigricans is commonly seen in obese, diabetics and those with metabolic or hormonal dysfunction. They appear as dark and thickened skin patches in the body folds, such as the neck, groin and underarms. They usually disappear on losing weight.                                                                                                               

Once diabetes is under control, you are able to maintain your blood sugar levels within normal limits, then all these skin manifestations can be corrected and even reversed before permanent damage happens. 

Lifestyle Changes for Diabetes Management

We all know diabetes especially type 2 is a lifestyle disease and can be managed by lifestyle changes, which would be in the form of : 

  1. Dietary changes, consult an experienced nutritionist who can guide you with your daily diet and nutrition plan.
  1. Follow an exercise routine that can be part of your daily life, it may be a walk in the open, can join gym, yoga, swimming etc. A regular exercise routine will help you maintain normal blood sugars, as well as help lose weight.
  1. Mindfulness helps relieve stress in our lives, and we know stress is one of the major causes of diabetes and weight gain. Do deep breathing and meditation, which will help you lead a better life.

It is necessary to regularly consult your skin expert. Consult with Dr Jastinder Gill, best skin doctor in Ludhiana for healthy skin.