November is National Diabetes Awareness Month and a good time to look at the importance of maintaining good skin care for people with diabetes. While most skin conditions can be prevented or easily treated, at least one third of people with diabetes will have a diabetes related skin condition. Understanding the importance of skin care and learning ways to care for your skin can help pave the way for healthier skin.
Well managed diabetes, which means trying to maintain blood sugar levels within your target range, following a healthy diet, exercising, and making routine visits to your healthcare provider means healthier skin as well. High blood sugar levels can cause dry skin and also more susceptibility to harmful bacteria. Always try to prevent dry skin because when dry skin gets scratched it can open up and allow infection to start.
Bath Time Suggestions
Healthy bathing habits are essential to everyone, but especially to those with diabetes. Keep your skin clean and dry though try to avoid very hot baths and showers. Don’t use bubble baths. Use a good moisturizing soap, mild shampoo and always use a moisturizing lotion as well. Bathe less often in cold, dry months also.
How to Treat a Cut
If your skin gets cut, try to treat it immediately by washing with soap and water. Only use an antibiotic cream if your healthcare provider okays it. Also try to keep the cut covered. If you have a major cut, burn, or infection, please contact your healthcare provider.
Watch out for those Feet!
Your feet are important and need special care. Check your feet daily for skin changes, sores, or cuts. It can be more difficult for feet to heal, so try not to go barefoot. While you may want to moisturize your feet, do not put the moisturizing lotion between your toes because that could lead to a fungal infection.
If you have any skin issues that you are not able to solve yourself, please contact your dermatologist.