What are your lips trying to tell you?
Lips just like everything else in the body can get swollen. When lips are swollen they do not look nice like naturally puffy lips. They look dry, chapped, and unhealthy. Lips get puffy and swell up due to a number of different factors. There are several different things that can cause the lips to become swollen:
- Oral Herpes: If lips are red and swollen they can be used by oral herpes which are also known as cold sores. The sores are filled with a clear fluid and are red. They often form in the corner of the mouth. While the sores will usually go away in a couple of days, there are over the counter medications that can be used to treat them. Once the sores are gone they will be dormant but can be triggered and reappear at any time. To reduce the appearance of the sore put a cool cloth on it three times a day. Vaseline will also help to get rid of swelling and dryness of your delicate lips. If the sore does not go away within a couple of days contact a doctor for prescription medication.
- Skin Allergies: Swollen lips can be a sign that you are allergic to something. When the lips are swollen it is a sign that the immune system is not responding to something foreign properly. The body is trying to defend itself and swelling is one way to let you know something is wrong. The immune system will try to fight this off and cause the skin including the lips to swell. When the lips swell, the immune system is trying to fight off an allergic reaction to something. If you notice that your skin is swelling after you use a certain product or brand of lipstick discontinue use. If the swelling does not go down contact your doctor.
- Food Allergies: If you are allergic to a specific food, your lips will swell as the body tires to fight off this invader. The body calls on help from the immune system to fight off what is harming it. The antibodies that are used can add to the swelling of the lips. If you notice your lips swelling after eating a certain type of food, do not eat it anymore. Certain things in food such as spices as also cause lips to swell and should be avoided.
- Nutritional Deficiency: If your lips swell it can be a sign that your body is lacking the proper vitamins especially vitamin B12. The body is trying to hold in all the moisture that it can to protect the delicate cells. To fix this problem eat a well balanced diet and take a multivitamin for healthy skin and lips cells. This can also be a sign of a more serious problem and may need to be addressed by a doctor.
- Changes In Temperature: When the temperature changes the moisture is removed from the air causing the lips to swell. When the weather is cold the air is dry and lacks moisture. Heating sources can also suck the moisture out of the air. Warm dry air also lacks moisture causing the body to take measures to retain the moisture. To fight the changes in weather, use a humidifier to add moisture to the air.
Treatments (Without Medication):
To reduce the swelling of lips without any medication put a cold compress on them. Wrap some ice in a paper towel. A wash cloth can also be used. Gently hold this on the lips for a period of 10 minutes. Remove the compress and allow the lips to rest for a couple of minutes. Apply the compress once again. Aloe Vera can also be used for help reduce inflammation. Aloe has anti-inflammatory properties to help reduce swelling. Apply aloe to the lips and gently rub it in. This can be done twice a day.
Lips swelling can be a sign that the body is lacking something or there is an issue. If at home cures do not work, be sure to see a doctor to rule out serious health conditions. Most the time the lips are looking for moisture or vitamins. Giving the lips what they need will lead to healthy lips once again.