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How To Get Rid of Swollen Lips

How To Get Rid of Swollen Lips

Lip inflammation treatment will depend on the causative factor behind this condition. This article provides a few treatment options that may come handy for people looking to deal with this condition.
Dr. Sumaiya Khan
Last Updated: Feb 8, 2018
Lip swelling, also known as lip edema, occurs when one or both the lips increase in size, sometimes even two or threefold. This swelling is usually characterized by the accumulation of fluid or inflammation of the tissues inside the lip. It can have many causes which include allergic reactions to certain foods, medications, or airborne pollens, lip injury, lip surgery, sunburn, diseases, etc. Sudden lip swelling which lasts for a longer period of time may be a symptom of an infection or a more serious condition. Therefore, it is important to understand and diagnose the exact cause behind it, as the treatment will depend on the cause of lip swelling.
Treatment
Following are the treatment options for dealing with lip swelling according to the underlying cause:
For Swelling Due To Allergy
One of the most common causes of lip swelling is allergies. It may occur due to contact with any allergen such as pollens, pet dander, insect bites, certain foods or medicines, etc. This leads to a transient swelling of the lip and the adjoining areas, such as the eyes. Sometimes, the lips may swell up due to an allergic reaction to ingredients in cosmetics, like lipsticks and lip balms. In such cases, the doctor will preferably prescribe antihistamines or corticosteroids to treat the allergic reaction and reduce the swelling.
If the allergic reaction is due to a medical condition known as anaphylaxis, then it needs immediate medical attention since it is a potentially harmful disease.
For Swelling Due To Inflammation
In some cases, there is swelling of lips due to cheilitis, that is, inflammation of the lips. In this condition, along with swelling, there are itchy dry lips as well. However, cheilitis normally results from either vitamin B deficiency, or due to ill-fitting dentures and dental prosthesis, due to which the normal bite and closing of the mouth is affected. Thus, in such cases, the treatment will involve giving the person vitamin B rich foods or prescribing multivitamin capsules.
However, if the cause is swelling due to ill-fitting prosthesis, then it is best to visit a dentist and get the prosthesis fitted properly. In a condition called cheilitis glandularis, there is inflammation of the submucosal glands which causes sudden lip swelling. In this case, the treatment will differ and the medication to be used will be prescribed by a specialist.
Home Remedies
The following home remedies may be used for lip inflammation treatment:
  • Apply a cold compress for 10 minutes, and then alternate with a hot compress for another 10 minutes to help reduce the inflammation.
  • Apply aloe vera gel to the affected area for 3-4 times a day. This may help reduce the swelling and subsequent pain since aloe vera has anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Apply vitamin E oil to the swollen lips to provide nutrition and quicken the recovery time.
  • Soak a tea bag in warm water for 10 minutes and let it cool down. Now apply this tea bag on the affected lips. A component called tannins present in the tea has astringent properties, which may help reduce the inflammation. Repeat this procedure for 3-4 times a day.
Prevention
  • Take proper care of your lips. Regularly exfoliate your lips at home since this will remove the superficial build up of dead skin.
  • To decrease the chances of sun damage, use a wide-brimmed hat and a lip balm that has an SPF of at least 15.
  • Do not use spoiled cosmetics. If you are trying out cosmetics for the first time, be sure to do a patch test on the skin before you try it on your face. Check the lip balm ingredients for any content that you may be allergic to.
The aforementioned treatment options will definitely help you reduce the lip swelling. If your lips suddenly swell up overnight, or if they hurt a lot and swell up, then it is best to immediately consult a doctor and get the condition diagnosed and treated at the earliest.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.