How to Fix Chapped Lips
Your lips lack some of the natural protection found in the rest of your skin. They have thin skin and no sweat glands or oil glands, meaning that they are easily susceptible to drying out and becoming damaged, according to Discovery Health. If you suffer from chapped lips, you likely have habits that contribute to their dryness but you may also be genetically predisposed to dry skin. Regardless of the source, you can take steps right now to protect your lips from looking and feeling parched.
Read the ingredients on lip balms or creams before you buy them. The Mayo Clinic recommends buying an oil-based lip cream or a lip balm that contains beeswax or petrolatum. Discovery Health recommends choosing a product that contains a sun protection factor, or SPF, of at least 15 to reduce your risk of sun damage.
Apply a flavorless lip balm or use a flavor you don’t enjoy to discourage yourself from licking your lips. Just as constant hand washing causes your hands to dry out, lip licking dries out your lips, according to Discovery Health. Having dry lips can encourage you to lick them more often, creating a vicious cycle.
Apply your balm or cream regularly. Keep your lip moisturizer in your pocket for easy access, apply it before you go out into dry weather and apply it any time you are tempted to lick your lips.
Drink water. The water you drink will moisturize your whole body, including your lips. Look at the color of your urine to determine whether you are hydrated; if your urine is clear to light yellow, you are probably drinking enough fluids. If you still find that your skin is dry despite your body’s hydration levels, use a humidifier to moisten the air within your home, says The Mayo Clinic.
Write down what enters your mouth to pinpoint any aggravating factors. You may have a skin allergy to something that contacts your lips every day, such as a favorite food, toothpaste or mouthwash, suggests Discovery Health. Change your toothpaste or mouthwash brand and alter your diet to see if the problem dissipates. Moreover, to aid in healing your lips any time they’re chapped, temporarily abstain from consuming pepper, barbecue sauce, mustard, alcoholic beverages and orange juice, says Discovery Health.
Talk to your doctor if nothing you’ve tried has worked. Persistently chapped lips sometimes indicate underlying health conditions that require additional treatment, says the Mayo Clinic.
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