As any diabetic knows, the condition can lead to all kinds of issues, particularly problems with their skin. For diabetics, skin issues are usually because high blood-sugar levels can result in dehydrated skin, poor circulation, and a compromised immune system.
The combination of dry skin and vulnerability to both bacterial and fungal infections means that diabetics can get really quite itchy scalps! Whether the cause is a yeast infection, reactions to irritants or simply dryness causing flaking or impairing the skin’s barrier function, the treatment tends to be similar.
What can you do to treat an itchy scalp?
Here are 5 steps for managing itchy scalps:
1. Most important of all: get blood-sugar levels under control!
Talk to your doctor or diabetes nurse about how you’re managing and whether you need to change how much insulin you’re taking.
2. Treat your sensitive skin gently
You might find it helpful to follow an eczema skincare regimen, that focuses on avoiding irritants and keeping skin hydrated. See our article on managing sensitive skin naturally.
3. Change the products you’re using
Switch out the toiletries you use for gentler ones made specially for sensitive skin: avoid perfumes, harsh chemicals or common irritants such as sulfates (SLS/ALS/SLES) or alcohol.
4. Take shorter, cooler baths or showers
Prolonged exposure to hot water can cause the skin to dry out rapidly and itchiness to increase, so dial down the temperature and keep showers short.
5. Treat your scalp every week
Boost hydration and condition levels with a nourishing oil on a regular basis; it’s not as easy to feed the scalp with the nutrients it needs to stay healthy as it is to look after skin on the rest of your body, as emollients can be difficult to apply on hair. Balmonds Scalp Oil works well as a regular conditioning treatment and contains antimicrobial oils such as tea tree and rosemary to help keep yeast infections at bay!
If following these steps don't improve the situation, then check in with your doctor for some medicated help.
All the products in our Dry Skin Range are excellent choices for looking after diabetic skin. We’d recommend choosing products that work for different areas of the body. How about trying the following products for specific issues?
- Cooling Cream with menthol, aloe, shea butter and lavender to cool itchy lower legs
- Skin Salvation balm, made with beeswax and hemp seed oil to nourish and soften cracked skin on the feet and hands
- Intensive Hand Cream, rich in sea buckthorn berry oil, shea butter, hemp, olive and safflower to soften and protect dry hands
- Daily Moisturising Cream with four biodynamic anti-inflammatory herbal tinctures, plus hemp and shea butter, as a general moisturiser for all-over natural hydration
- Bath & Body Oil with lavender, hemp and olive, to lock in vital moisture during or after bathing
- Scalp Oil which contains tea tree, rosemary and borage, for managing folliculitis on the scalp or as an antimicrobial foot rub to keep fungal infections at bay
- Tea Tree balm, an antimicrobial tea tree ointment for instant application on minor cuts, grazes, bites, blisters etc.
If you require medical advice we recommend you always contact your healthcare professional.
If you or someone you are caring for seems very unwell, is getting worse or you think there's something seriously wrong, call for emergency services straight away. For general medical advice, please contact your healthcare professional, this article does not contain or replace medical advice.
Do not delay getting help if you're worried. Trust your instincts.