Posts for: February, 2018
According to the American Diabetes Association, diabetes afflicts more than 25 million children and adults in the United States. Of these, 7 million do not know they have the disease. At some point in their lives, about 1 in 3 people with diabetes will develop skin problems related to the disorder.
Most skin conditions suffered by people with diabetes are due to immune-system deficiencies caused by high blood sugar. These outbreaks can be as harmless as dry skin or a rash, or may result in a serious infection. Diabetics tend to get the following skin conditions more easily:
- Bacterial infections--such as styes, boils and nail infections
- Fungal infections--such as athlete’s foot and ringworm
- Neuropathy--which can lead to foot ulcers, and in severe case, amputation
If not cared for properly, a minor skin condition in a person with diabetes can turn into a serious problem with severe consequences. The good news is that most skin problems can be prevented and treated with proper care and early detection. The role of your dermatologist can be very important in early recognition of skin conditions associated with diabetes.
Tips for controlling your diabetes and improving your skin health:
- Control your blood glucose level. Manage your diabetes by following a proper diet, exercising and checking your blood sugar levels on a regular basis.
- Moisturize. Prevent dry skin by using a lotion after washing.
- Inspect your feet. Feet are especially vulnerable to injuries due to poor circulation and lack of sensation that is associated with diabetes. Make sure your shoes fit properly, never walk barefoot, use extra precaution when cutting toenails and check your feet daily for minor injuries that can often go unnoticed.
- Keep skin clean and dry. Keep your skin clean by washing regularly in warm water and using mild soap. Gently pat your skin dry, paying extra attention to places where water can hide.
- Protect your skin from the sun. Always apply sunscreen to protect your skin from burning and blistering that can lead to serious infections.
- Inspect skin daily. Check daily for any changes in your skin, paying special attention to known problem areas such as the feet. Changes in skin color or temperature, swelling, pain or open sores that are slow to heal may signify a problem. Notify your dermatologist right away if you suspect a problem.
Keeping your diabetes under control is the most important factor in preventing the skin-related complications of diabetes. Follow your health care provider's advice regarding nutrition, exercise and medication. A dermatologist can help diabetic patients identify skin conditions and recommend the best course of prevention and treatment.
Skin cancer is the most commonly diagnosed form of cancer in the United States. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, as many as half of all American adults over the age of 65 will be diagnosed with some form of skin cancer at least once in their lifetime (there are several forms, some of which are more common than others). Like many other types of cancer, prevention and early detection are the best tools for fighting skin cancer. Dr. Sanjiva Goyal, a dermatologist at Coastal Dermatology & MedSpa, advises adults of all ages to practice prevention year round (regardless of climate) by wearing protective clothing and sunscreen, and to make regular skin cancer screenings a normal part of a comprehensive health and wellness routine.
Skin Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment in Ponte Vedra Beach and Jacksonville, FL
There are three types of skin cancer:
- Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) - the second most common type of skin cancer, develops on the outer layer of the epidermis
- Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) - the most common form of skin cancer, develops in the bottom layers of the epidermis and accounts for the majority of cancer diagnoses
- Melanoma - develops in the cells that produce pigment (melanocytes), less common than SCC and BCC, but accounts for the majority of skin cancer fatalities when left undiagnosed and treated
Signs and Symptoms of Skin Cancer - What to Look For
Although people with fair skin and hair are generally at greater risk for developing skin cancer, everyone is at risk for skin cancer and people with darker complexions should also take precautions against sun damage, and monitor for any changes or abnormalities in new or existing freckles or moles.
Basal cell carcinoma symptoms - white or brown scaly or waxy looking patches, most commonly found on the neck and face
Squamous cell carcinoma symptoms - scaly patch or sore that does not heal, or heals and then reopens, most common on the parts of the skin that receive the most sun exposure such as face, neck, arms and hands
Melanoma symptoms - changes to the size, shape, borders, and color of existing mole or a new growth, can develop anywhere on the body
Skin Cancer Screening in Ponte Vedra Beach and Jacksonville, FL
For more information on the different types of skin cancer, prevention tips, and screening information, contact Coastal Dermatology & MedSpa to schedule an appointment by calling 904-727-9123 for Jacksonville or 904-567-1050 for Ponte Vedra Beach.
Brown spots and skin discoloration are frequent complaints for many people. The most common form of irregular pigmentation is hyperpigmentation, a condition in which patches of skin become darker in color than the normal surrounding skin. Some people have abnormal skin pigmentation from a young age, and for others it is brought on later in life by sun damage or injury to the skin. Individuals of all ages, ethnicities and skin types can be affected, although those with darker skin tones are more prone to develop it.
Hyperpigmentation usually appears as brown spots and dark patches on the face, chest, arms and hands. This darkening occurs when an excess of melanin, the brown pigment that produces normal skin color, forms deposits in the skin. Sun exposure, acne, genetics and hormonal changes can trigger or worsen irregular pigmentation.
Not all pigmentation problems can be avoided, but you can follow preventive measures to control and reduce dark spots from forming. It is especially important to use adequate sunscreen, manage your acne and discontinue the use of any oral medications that may be contributing to the problem.
How Can I Combat Hyperpigmentation?
The good news is that skin hyperpigmentation isn’t dangerous, and proper treatment can help rejuvenate troubling patches on the skin. There are many treatments at your dermatologist’s disposal, ranging from topical creams and dermabrasion to chemical peels and laser procedures. Your dermatologist will work with you to determine the most suitable treatment for your particular skin type and problem.
Although a frustrating condition, your skin complexion can be improved and corrected. Talk to your dermatologist about the best treatment options for you.