If you have ever had chapped lips, you know how irritated and painful they can become. They can become inflamed and sore and, if not treated properly, they can crack and bleed. During the wintertime, the dry and cold air causes lips to chap even more. What can we do to prevent painfully chapped lips and how do we treat them once we get them?
When we first feel our lips slowly beginning to dry, our first instinct is to attempt to hydrate them. So we usually lick our lips. Sure, this offers temporary relief from dry lips, but once your saliva dries, the lips are left even more dehydrated than before. The reason for this is that licking your lips strips away your lip’s natural protective oils.
Also, there are chemicals present in your saliva that help digest food. When you lick your lips, the saliva, in a sense, attempts to digest your lips. Thus, the number one way to prevent dry lips from becoming chapped and sore is to do everything in your power not to lick them. Keeping yourself well-hydrated during the day by drinking plenty of water will also help from drying out your lips.
When you are outdoors in the sun, you use sunblock to protect your skin, don’t you? Well, your lips are skin, too, so be sure to always apply a lip balm that contains sunscreen to your sensitive lips. If you smoke, stop. Smoking strips your lips of its oils and dries them out, so avoid it at all costs.
If everything fails and you still find yourself with cracked and bleeding lips, be sure to begin treatment right away. First, invest in a lip balm that is specifically designed for chapped lips. This will prevent your lips from getting any more chapped.
In order to remove dry skin from the lips, apply a small amount of Vaseline to a toothbrush (use a new one and discard it after use) and gently rub the bristles over your lips. This should safely remove all of the dead and dry skin off your lips. However, if your lips are to the point of bleeding, you may not want to do this. If the lips are inflamed, you can apply a tiny amount of hydrocortisone cream on the lips to decrease swelling.
Be sure to keep yourself hydrated, so drink plenty of water and non-caffeinated beverages every day. If the air in your home is very dry, invest in a humidifier to keep some moisture in the air. Dry air will only serve to aggravate your lips even more. Many home remedies include applying Vaseline or Mentholatum cream to your lips overnight.
Some remedies even call for applying olive oil or butter on your lips to cure the chapping. However, if your lips do not respond to any of the above treatments or if they are becoming severely chapped and uncomfortable, schedule a visit with your physician to rule out any type of deficiency you may have that is causing your lips to chap.Some remedies