Diabetes warning: The 6 signs on your SKIN that can be a sign of life-threatening disease | The Sun

CASES of diabetes are on the up and it's estimated around 13.6million Brits are at risk.

While key symptoms usually include extreme thirst and an increased need to urinate, there could also be signs on your skin.

Diabetes is a serious condition in which the level of glucose in your body is too high.

There are two types, with the main difference being that type 1 diabetes is a genetic condition, with type 2 mainly being down to lifestyle choices.

But both are as serious as each other and can lead to serious health complications.

With that in mind, it's important to know how the illness could show up in your skin.

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Chartered chemist, Bruce Green said that diabetic skin can be similar to skin that has prematurely aged.

"The skin changing process is ‘Glycation’. A process where proteins and sugars are cross-linked to advanced glycation end products (age) – there is a negative impact on the elasticity of the skin, when collagen and elastin are stiffened," he said.

He explained skin problems are more likely amongst diabetics because of reduced circulation and reduced sensitivity of nerves.

In addition, Bruce, who is the founder of diabetic skincare range, SOS Serum Skincare said there are six key warning signs you need to be aware of.

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Signs to look out for on the skin are:

  1. Yellow or brown patches or bumps
  2. A darker area of skin that feels velvety particularly around the neck and armpit
  3. Hard-thickened patches of skin – particularly on fingers and toes
  4. The sudden appearance of blisters or groups of blisters
  5. Skin spots – small and barely noticeable depressions on the skin
  6. Extremely dry and itchy skin patches in particular on the arms, legs, elbows and feet.

However, these aren't the only signs you need to be aware of.

The NHS recommends that you see a doctor if you're feeling very thirsty and you're peeing more frequently than usual – especially at night.

Other key signs of diabetes include feeling very tired, weight loss and a loss of muscle bulk and blurred vision.

When it comes to your skin, the NHS says that itching around the penis or vagina or experiencing cuts or wounds that heal slowly are also common signs – all of which you should seek medical attention for.

If you are diabetic – then it's key that you look after your skin.

Bruce said that when it comes to cleaning yourself, you should use a mild soap-free, alcohol free substance.

You need to make sure that you wipe it off and dry off properly – as damp skin can cause irritation.

When it comes to keeping your skin soft and supple, the skin guru said you should also use a high quality moisturiser with a minimum SPF of 30.

"Avoid perfumed products and petrochemical ingredients and look for a short ingredient list, he advised.

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He also suggested that when you can, you should try and wear 100 per cent cotton.

"This allows a healthy through flow of air and helps to reduce localised perspiration," he added.

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