Cracked, Chapped and Dry Lips
Cracked and chapped lips are usually a result of dryness. The skin of the lips may also peel off in some cases. When the lips become too dry, tiny tears may appear on the surface and this can lead to bleeding and considerable discomfort. Chapped lips are rarely a serious problem and mainly develop during the cold winter months, and due to wind exposure or sunburn. Those who have a habit of constantly licking the lips may also develop chapped lips. Breathing through the mouth can also cause your lips to become dry. In some cases, certain mild health conditions such as a common cold, nutritional deficiencies, allergies and dehydration may cause the lips to become dry and cracked. It is very easy to care for chapped and dry lips and theres a lot that you can do to reduce the severity of the problem, such as increasing water intake, avoiding cold or sun exposure and using simple home remedies. Under the rarest of circumstances, cracked, chapped and dry lips may require medical care. This mainly occurs when the body is severely dehydrated. If the condition is accompanied by other symptoms such as confusion, cold skin and lethargy, it would be a good idea to seek medical attention.
Symptoms of Cracked, Chapped and Dry Lips
The lips are so prone to chapping and dryness because the skin is very thin and does not have any protective hair growth. There are also no sweat or oil glands present beneath the surface. Therefore the lips are stripped of moisture much faster than other areas of the body. The common signs and symptoms of chapped lips include:
- Pain or tenderness
- Rough skin
- Peeling and flaking
Causes of Cracked, Chapped and Dry Lips
Following are the causes of chapped, cracked or dry lips Over exposure to the cold or windy conditions, Over exposure to the sun, Allergies to cosmetic products, Infections, Drugs, Dehydration, Kawasaki disease, Macrocytosis, Riboflavin deficiency, Sjogren's syndrome, Frequent use of soaps and other chemicals, Deficiency of vitamin A, B and C, Smoking, History of skin disorder When the lips are chapped or dry do not attempt to lick them, this will make you feel better only for short time. Once the saliva evaporates the condition will worsen. Your lips could be in problem because of your ill-fitting dentures, in such case consult your dentist. In severe cases, where there is excessive cracking, dryness and redness, one can use a medicated lip balm. It is best to avoid using flavored chap sticks and balms as this could induce frequent licking. One can also protect the lips from sun exposure and cold, dry winds by covering the mouth with a scarf when going outdoors. Increasing the humidity in the house can also alleviate chapped lips. It helps to wash the mouth frequently and then follow it up with an application of lip balm. In some cases, the condition may worsen so much that bleeding may also occur. In such cases, one must consult a doctor. Prescription lip balms may then be used to treat the condition.
The lips may become chapped and dry due to various factors. Most cases of chapped lips are due to the following:
- Exposure to harsh winds
- Exposure to harsh chemicals contained in soaps and other skin care products
- Intake of certain strong medications such as those which help to treat acne
- Exposure to allergens present in the environment, foods, cosmetics and skin care products
- Deficiencies of the vitamins A, B and C
- Wearing dentures that do not fit properly
- Fungal infection known as angular chelitis which results due to deficiencies of iron, zinc and the vitamins A and B. It results in cracking at the corners of the mouth.
Remedies for Cracked, Chapped and Dry Lips
Cracked, chapped and dry lips can be managed through a range of different treatments. Some important tips to care for chapped lips and prevent the condition from worsening are as follows:
- Drink plenty of water daily
- Apply sunscreen over your lips whenever you step outdoors to protect from sun damage
- Apply a good lip balm which contains beneficial ingredients that help to moisturize and nourish the lips. Ensure that your lip balm also contains sunscreen.
- Refrain from licking the lips often as this can aggravate dryness
- If you are prone to dry skin and lips, it is a good idea to use a humidifier to add moisture to the air
- Protect the lips with a scarf when there are harsh winds
- Sometimes the lips may become dry and chapped due to the ingredients present in toothpaste. Try changing your toothpaste brand to alleviate the problem.
- Avoid using lipsticks and other lip cosmetics which contain strong chemicals. Always buy such products from reputed brands and check their expiry date.
Described below is a beneficial cracked lips remedy which helps to alleviate dryness and discomfort.
- Warm water helps to relieve dryness and also improves blood flow in the lips. Take some warm water in a bowl and soak a clean washcloth in it. Squeeze out the excess water and place the cloth against your lips until it cools down. Repeat this 3 to 4 times until the lips become softer and less rough.
- You can then gently rub the cloth against your lips a few times. This helps to get rid of dead and dry skin.
- Next take dip a clean cloth in cool water and hold it against your lips for a few seconds. Then gently pat dry.
- Apply some petroleum jelly to the lips and allow it to remain for about 20 minutes. This helps to soften the lips and also forms a protective layer.
- Apply a thick coat of a moisturizing lip balm. Keep the lip balm with you at all times so that you can use whenever you feel your lips becoming chapped or dry.
There are many simple and quick ways to treat dry lips. Here are some popular home remedies for chapped lips.lips. Keep in mind that most of these home remedies are not subjected to rigorous scientific studies and they can vary greatly in their effectiveness.
- Coconut oil is one of the best home remedies for dry lips. Apply a small quantity of coconut oil to the lips frequently during the day. This must especially be done in cold weather.
- Take a slice of cucumber and gently rub it over the lips. This helps to soothe dry lips and relieves tenderness.
- Aloe vera is a highly beneficial natural remedy which is effective in treating a variety of skin problems. You can also use it to cure chapped lips. Extract the gel from aloe vera leaves and apply it to the lips daily. Aloe vera gel is also available in many drug stores today.
- You can also apply a small amount of clarified butter to the lips to relieve dryness
- To remove dead skin from the lips, apply fresh milk cream before going to bed at night
- Soak a few rose petals in fresh milk. A few hours later, grind them into a paste and apply to the lips.
- Add a few drops of honey to some petroleum jelly and apply to the lips. Keep it on for about 15 minutes and then wipe it off.
- You can make an effective ointment for chapped lips by combining a teaspoon of lemon juice, a teaspoon of castor oil and a teaspoon of glycerin. Mix well and apply to the lips.
- Olive oil is a popular remedy for skin dryness. It is extremely moisturizing and helps to keep the lips soft and supple. You can add a small amount of sugar to a teaspoon of olive oil. Rub the mixture over the lips and keep it on for ten minutes. Then rinse with lukewarm water. This is a great way to naturally exfoliate the lips.
- Cocoa butter helps to moisturize the lips and also reduces discoloration. Apply cocoa butter to the lips and allow it to remain for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Papaya can be used to naturally exfoliate the lips. Apply mashed, ripe papaya to the lips and then rinse off after 10 minutes.
- A moisturizing natural ointment for chapped lips can be made by combining a few drops of nutmeg essential oil, mandarin essential oil and vitamin E oil.
Diet for Cracked, Chapped and Dry Lips
Much like the skin on the rest of the body, the lips also must be kept hydrated. Here are some dietary tips which help in relieving cracked and chapped lips.
- Ensure an adequate intake of water and other fluids on a daily basis.
- Follow a healthy and balanced diet comprising of a variety of different foods. The body requires a steady supply of several vitamins and minerals in order to stay healthy. Consume lots of fresh fruits and vegetables as these are rich in antioxidants. This helps to protect the body from the adverse effects of free radicals which affect the cells. In case you are unable to obtain all your nutrients from the diet, speak to your doctor regarding the intake of nutritional supplements.
- Vitamin A is an especially important vitamin for good health of the skin as it helps in repair and maintenance. You can obtain vitamin A from foods such as milk, apricots, carrots and milk.
- Vitamin C which is contained in citrus fruits and several vegetables helps to protect the body from sun damage and also aids in tissue repair. Vitamin C even increases collagen production and this makes the lips fuller and suppler.
- Nuts, leafy vegetables and eggs contain high amounts of vitamin E which helps to prevent lines and wrinkles. Ageing can also cause dryness of the lips and hence it is important to supply your body with adequate amounts of this vitamin. Vitamin E is also present in many skin care products.
Suggestion for Cracked, Chapped and Dry Lips
In some cases, dryness and cracked lips may be due to a dental problem such as disease or poor alignment. It is advisable to visit your dentist for an examination. Individuals who wear braces often complain of chapping and irritation of the lips. Your dentist may recommend applying a special wax to the edges of the braces so that they do not cause any discomfort.
- Office of Womens Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; http://www.womenshealth.gov/news/HealthDay/EN/2013/Mar/01/673715.html
Cracked, Chapped and Dry Lips Treatments - more information
Cracked, Chapped and Dry Lips - Frequently asked questions
- Chapped Lips and patch on lip: a pink patch has formed on my lips due to peeling and winter chapping also as i am with a habit of smoking...Pls suggest a remedy so that i can regain my natural lip color
Dry weather can cause chapped lips besides other causes such as: Lip biting and sucking, Vitamin...
- Quick Cure for Sun Poisoned Lips: Sun poisoning to the lips. Is there something I can put on them to help the healing process to occur more quickly
Find a fresh aloe plant and slit open a two inch piece of the plant. Let this rest over your...
- Advice to sooth burning sensation: I have severely burning feel on my lips from eating salsa with jalapenos.
Sucking on a ice cube serves as a remedy for pain relief from jalapeno burns. Baking soda, when...
- Home remedy for pigmentation on the lips: There is pigmentation in my lip colour. Looks horrible white and blackish red .suggest a home remedy also there is a knot on a lip. Please suggest.
Prepare equal parts mixture of Aloe Vera pulp, Aswagandha Ghrutam and Shatawari Ghrutam. Take a...
- Natural cure for lip bleeding from shaving: Hi,
How do you stop bleeding from the lips caused by shaving, regards
You should take more care when shaving. After all, hair does not grow on the lip but on the skin...
- Natural remedy for dark lips: Hi, I dont smoke (i may have smoked a total of 100 cigarettes) I have dark lips, particularly the upper one, could you provide natural remedy.
Visit our website to read about natural remedies for dark lips and more……...
- Question on lip fungus: Is there a some type of fungus that affects the lips?
Yeast overgrowth (fungus) can cause the corners of your mouth to become red, chapped or cracked....
- Remedies to remove tan: I am 30yrs female with wheatish complexion but have really tanned skin on arms and my lips turn blue in summer. How to get rid of this tan and make my lips look soft and natural pink?
Lips are the most sensual, delicate and sensitive part of the body.Mix equal amounts of almond...
- Treatment for pain due to bubbles on lip: i have two bubbles on my lip that aren't really noticable since they are the same color as my lip but they have become annoying. I have also been feeling a constant burning of my lips and don't know what to do. I
bubbles on lips may be due to heat inside the body. It may sometimes be produced due to improper...
15 Cracked, Chapped and Dry Lips remedies suggested by our users
don't make it worse!!
suggested by leslie on Wednesday, January 21, 2009
suggested by Paul on Sunday, May 4, 2008
suggested by yashpreet on Tuesday, April 15, 2008
suggested by dr sindhu on Friday, December 28, 2007
Cracked, Chapped and Dry Lips Treatments. More...