With the winter temperature changes drying out our skin, getting chapped lips this time of year isn’t surprising – but it doesn’t have to be inevitable. Chapped lips are more than just an uncomfortable nuisance; they can be extremely harmful to your oral health. Here’s why you should stop chapped lips before they even start.
Chapped Lips Can Cause infection
If your lips are cracked and bleeding, they can be more susceptible to germs and infection, which can easily spread to your gums and create new, more serious problems like periodontitis.
You Can Miss Warning Signs
Lips can become chapped for other reasons besides the dry air. They can be warning signs of a more serious condition, such as a yeast infection, vitamin deficiency such as B1, B2, B6 and D, skin cancer, or an allergic reaction. Unfortunately, you may miss that warning if your lips are already frequently chapped.
Stop Chapping in its Tracks
The easiest way to prevent chapped lips is to stay hydrated and moisturize whenever possible. For healthy lips, apply a lip balm with an SPF before going outdoors, whether it’s sunny or not. If your lips are already chapped, apply a medicated balm as needed. For seriously chapped lips, speak to a dermatologist about a prescription lip ointment. For lips that are cracked in the corners, a prescription ointment may be required. You can also find balms that contain hydrocortisone that will not only heal faster, but are also soothing and stay on the lips longer than traditional balms. Just remember: Whatever you do, don’t pick at or peel your lips!
To schedule an appointment with Dr. Abelar, please call (858) 866-9692.