Chapped Lips: Causes
Chapped lips are the result of the drying out of the surface layer of the lip. The lips are made of multiple layers including a thin layer of skin, a thin layer of fat and a thin layer of mucous membrane which is the part that gets chapped. Chapped lips can also be a result of a medical condition called atrophic glossitis, or angular cheilitis.
Chapped lips are an extremely common problem for people of all ages, both male and female. They are caused due to exposure to the sun, wind, cold weather, food particles trapped between your lips, dry atmosphere or excessive use of lipsticks or lip balms.
Chapped lips occur when the skin peels off due to a dry climate, low humidity in the surrounding atmosphere, rough handling or for some other reason. Some individuals suffer from chapped lip syndrome which is a chronic itching and flaking of the skin in the lips.
Other causes of chapped lips include:
- Frostbite – In the case of frostbite, there is a loss of body heat as well as water. In such cases, skin loses elasticity and becomes dry with mild bleeding from cracks.
- Bitter wind – Bitter winds also cause the skin to dry leading to severe cases of cracked lips. This condition is common during the winter season.
- Environmental pollutants – Pollutants such as sulphur, nitrous acid and chlorine can also cause dryness in the skin leading to cracking.
The main symptoms of chapped lips include cracks in the skin, which is red or flushed, a tingling sensation around the mouth, itchiness and pain around the mouth
7 Effective Ways to Cure Chapped Lips
There are plenty of things that you can do to help prevent chapped lips. For example, by using a lip balm or lipstick that contains SPF (sun protection factor), you will be able to reduce the chances of excessive exposure to sunlight pressing against your lips.
Chapped lips can occur due to many reasons. Being deficient in Vitamin B or may be due to the weather change. It is very uncomfortable and you feel like you are in pain. But do not worry, there are some simple ways to cure your chapped lips. Since this condition is mostly caused by dryness due to changes in weather or dryness of the environment, the best way to cure chapped lips is to moisturize them. Preventing chapped lips can be easy if you take care of your lips properly.
Here are some ways to treat chapped lips effectively:
- Vitamin E oil is one of the best home remedies for moisturizing your lips. Apply vitamin E on your lips regularly on a daily basis on all parts of the lips. Since vitamin E promotes cell turnover and regeneration, using it on your lips can bring new cells to the surface faster. The thick and oily consistency of vitamin E oil can also prevent further irritation.
- Use cold cream on your lips regularly on a daily basis. Cold cream will prevent your lips from getting dry. Lip balms that contain menthol can provide a cooling sensation but avoid using lip balms that contain mint because it can dry the lips even more. Avoid scented and flavoured lip products because these ingredients can also dry out the lips.
- Honey has antibacterial properties that can help keep your lips healthy and moist by protecting them from bacterial infection. It also helps in healing the cracked skin around your lips. To get rid of cracked dry lips, just take some honey on a cotton swab and gently rub it onto your chapped lips. Repeating this process at least thrice a day will help clear the cracks in no time.
- One can try using lip scrubs that contain sugar or baking soda to gently exfoliate away the dry skin. Always look for products that contain soothing ingredients to moisten the lips.
- Spending too much time in dry air can remove moisture from the skin, especially during winters. One can consider using a humidifier during the winter months to add some much-needed moisture back into the air.
- Tobacco smoke can irritate the sensitive skin around the lips, causing them to dry out easily and become more chapped. Smoking can also cause serious problems in the mouth such as mouth ulcers and gum pain. One can see significant improvement in their lips after they stop smoking as the skin begins to heal quickly.
- Green tea is one of the most popular home remedies for various skin issues. Rich in antioxidants and minerals, green tea also contains polyphenols that can reduce inflammation. Soak a bag of green tea in warm water and gently rub it over the lips to soften and remove excess dry skin.
The lips need to be kept moisturized to counter any negative effects from changes in weather, cosmetics, health condition and environment.
Lip creams have long been considered the best solution to deal with chapped lips. But this is not entirely true; creams can be harsh and can even lead to skin allergies.
The causes of chapped lips can be anything from cold weather to an allergic reaction from a product that you have applied to your lips, that is causing it. For this, you need to take a closer look at your diet and lifestyle.
Be sure to drink plenty of water during the day. Water keeps the body's tissues hydrated and reduces the chances of developing chapped lips.