Skin Problems in Diabetes
Diabetes can bring along many complications which can affect many parts of the body. Let us get to know more about diabetes and skin problems which come along with it.
All of us are aware that diabetes has to do with blood glucose levels getting out of control and the majority of the people understand that the problem is caused by the body not being able to produce or be sensitive to insulin. However, many have yet to realize that diabetes is not only a problem concerning insulin and the uncontrollable blood glucose levels. These may be the main factors associated with the condition but there are so much physical discomfort and biological complications which can occur as a result of this disease. Therefore, we can say that diabetes comprises of a good number of physical problems that are caused by the body’s poor metabolism of glucose. Particular skin problems are bound to occur among many diabetics. So, let us get to know those skin problems which often come as a complication of diabetes.
Diabetic Skin Disorders
We know by now that this metabolic problem, diabetes, can manifest itself in just any part of the body. We also know that there is a interrelation among every physiological functions and when one of the functions gets affected, every other function is affected too. When it comes to diabetes, when the body is not capable of converting glucose into energy, blood glucose increases to dangerous levels. So, with metabolism, the circulatory system and the blood constantly having some kind of effect on each other as well as every other body part and function, an health problem in any of these areas can certainly bring a significant effect on the whole body.
How Are Diabetes Skin Problems Treated? – Video Guide
Particular skin conditions are usually experienced by diabetics and they are given below:
- Fungal and Bacterial Skin Infections
With metabolic dysfunction, the immunity system is weaker and it is at this time that the body of a diabetic can be easily infected when microbial pathogens invade. This microscopic organisms attack the topmost layer of the body, the skin. Therefore, skin infections due to yeast, fungi and bacteria are usually seen among diabetics. The infection is easier when blood circulation slows down and the skin suffers from insufficient nourishment.
- Scleroderma Diabeticorum
This is a skin problem common among type 2 diabetes, but not as common among type 1 diabetes. Those diabetics with this skin condition show skin which becomes thicker at certain places such as the upper back and neck which are the more common areas. Many skin problems such as skin eruptions, dry skin problems, fungal and bacterial infections and skin conditions which result in a darkening hump-like development on the skin.
- Pigmentation Issues
Two usually seen skin conditions affecting diabetics are Acanthosis nigricans and Vitiligo. In the latter, as a result of abnormal loss of melanocytes, areas of skin at various parts of the body begin to become lighter than their surrounding skin.In the former condition, dermal folds are formed with the folds of skin becoming thicker and darker at elbow joints, underarms, groin, breast, and neck.
- Diabetic Dermopathy
This condition occurs at the shin and is often called shin spots, as the area has scaly, light-brown patches which are smooth and rounded in appearance. They are the result of changes in the blood capillaries in the feet and legs. Fortunately, the spots can heal by themselves, cause no pain and go away once the blood glucose is under control.
- Atherosclerosis and Diabetic Neuropathy
This skin condition is one of those which are most upsetting to the diabetics who find their legs become hairless, thin and the skin stretched due to the arteries in the legs getting thicker. With the arteries thicker, they become narrower, thus slowing down the flow of blood to the legs and leading to less feeling and more numbness and inability to feel pain, cold or heat. This numbness are similar to diabetic neuropathyc in which substantial nerve damage has occurred due to poor control of blood glucose levels.
- Insulin Hypertrophy
When fatty cells accumulate at the point where insulin is often injected, and usually this happens if the insulin used comes from pork or beef, you get a condition called insulin hypertrophy. Fortunately, we have no replaced animal insulin with human insulin and we get very much less cases of insulin hypertrophy.
- Other Diabetic Dermal Conditions
Common diabetes induced skin growths and eruptions are leg rashes, diabetic blisters, Digital Sclerosis, Disseminated Granuloma Annulare, Necrobiosis Lipoidica Diabeticorum, and Eruptive Xanthomatosis. As a result of yeast infections and poor circulation of the blood, the skin can become itchy and dry. Lowered immunity and worsening capability in healing, diabetics face problems of injury, wound or cuts which as slow to heal and sores that have pus constantly oozing out.
Recent advances in the medical field have improved the body’s ability to use insulin, helped to achieve better control of blood glucose, and make available improved skin care procedure and products for the management of diabetes and skin problems. Although only control over blood glucose can prevent all the skin problems linked to diabetes, relief from skin discomforts like thickened scaly skin patches, dryness and itchiness is possible through the usage of topical application creams, moisturizers, and lotions. Every day exercise for good blood circulation helps to lessen the problems arising from atherosclerosis and neuropathy.