Dry weather can create problems for people with diabetes

Posted at: 04/07/2014 6:03 PM
By: Jen Samp, KOB Eyewitness News 4

One in ten New Mexicans suffer from some form of diabetes, and doctors say there is new concern the drought is creating more danger for patients.

It's no secret dry weather is bad for our skin, but it's really bad for those with diabetes. Cracked skin can lead to an open wound, and with a diabetic, if a cut isn't treated it can lead to a long list of serious health problems.

Doctor Jeffrey Thomas with Lovelace Hospital sees around ten diabetic patients a day. He says he sees firsthand the elements his patients are up against. Right now, the dry weather is causing skin problems for a lot of people. But for diabetics, dry skin can be dangerous.

Thomas says many diabetics have decreased circulation and little sensation in their nerves, so it's harder to notice a cut; a cut that, if not treated, could be deadly.

His advice to diabetics is to keep checking for cuts and moisturize as much as possible. According to the New Mexico Health Department, over 204,000 people in the state have diabetes.