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Diabetes: Take a note of these 5 skin changes that may indicate diabetes

Diabetes: These 5 skin changes can indicate diabetes.

Diabetes requires constant management of blood sugar levels. This chronic condition can affect your skin too. Here are some signs visible on your skin which can be a result of diabetes.

Written by Satata Karmakar |Published : November 6, 2020 3:40 PM IST

How can you tell if you have diabetes? Diabetes can strike anyone, from any walk of life. Most early symptoms are from higher-than-normal levels of glucose, a kind of sugar, in your blood. According to the International Diabetes Federation, around 42.5 crore people suffer from diabetes, globally.

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a serious condition that causes higher than normal blood sugar levels. Diabetes occurs when your body cannot make or effectively use its own insulin, a hormone made by special cells in the pancreas called islets (eye-lets). Insulin serves as a "key" to open your cells, to allow the sugar (glucose) from the food you eat to enter. Then, your body uses that glucose for energy.

But with diabetes, several major things can go wrong to cause diabetes. Type 1 and type 2 diabetes are the most common forms of the disease, but there are also other kinds, such as gestational diabetes, which occurs during pregnancy, as well as other forms.

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Skin changes that can tell you that you are suffering from diabetes

Diabetes can affect many parts of the body, including your skin. When diabetes affects your skin, it is a sign that either you have undiagnosed diabetes or your current treatment needs to be adjusted.

Here are 5 skin changes that can indicate that you need to get your blood sugar tested.

Dark red or brown patches on the skin

You may notice dark brown patches on your skin which can look just like a tanned skin scar. Well, this is not tanning! It is a sign that you are suffering from diabetes. This condition is extremely common among people who are suffering from diabetes 1 and diabetes 2. The skin patches may irritate and can be itchy.

Blisters on your hands and legs

Diabetes can cause skin blisters which are not only ugly but can be painful and itchy. Blisters can be seen on your hands and legs. They generally appear when blood sugar levels are left uncontrolled for long.

Dry and itchy skin

People suffering from diabetes are most likely to have dry and itchy skin. Poor blood circulation caused by diabetes can lead to dry and itchy skin.

If your skin feels extremely dry and no lotion can combat it, it's time to talk to your doctor about it.

Slow wound healing

People who are suffering from diabetes may experience slow healing of wounds which can also turn into infections. This slow process of wound healing is due to the high availability of uncontrolled blood sugars.


Diabetes can be treated by improving ways to better use the insulin that the body already produces to normalize blood sugar levels. If blood sugar levels are still high, medications are used to help the body use its own insulin more efficiently. In some cases, insulin injections are necessary. Also, make sure to consider these:

  • Food
  • Exercise
  • Stress
  • Emotions and general health

NOTE: The above content includes advice for your information only. It is in no way a substitute for a qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information.

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