Diabetes can affect every part of your body, including your skin. In fact, skin problems are often the first sign that a person has diabetes. The good news is that most skin conditions can be prevented or easily treated if caught early.

When a person has diabetes, he or she can develop bacterial infections, fungal infections, and itchy skin more frequently than people who do not have diabetes.

One of the main culprits in fungal infections is calleda Candida albicans, which is a yeast-like fungus.These infections often occur in the warm, moist folds of your askin such as between your toes, your armpits, and in the corners of your mouth. If you think you have a fungal infection, call your doctor. You will need a prescription medication to cure it.

Localized itching is often caused by diabetes. It can be the result of dry skin, a yeast infection, or poor blood circulation. You may be able to treat itching yourself by limiting how often you bathe when the humidity is low. Use mild soap with moisturizer, and apply skin lotion after you bathe.

Diabetic dermopathy is caused by changes in the small blood vessels. Dermopathy looks like light brown, scaly patches and are often mistaken for age spots. The patches do not hurt, itch, or open up and require no medical treatment. Most often, they occur on the front of both legs. Ask your doctor to recommend a skin care regimen that’s right for you.

For a consultation on how to keep your skin healthy while living with diabetes please contact our Certified Diabetes Educator for more details.