Lip Eczema, lip dermatitis: how to deal with it?

Can you get eczema on your lips?


Lip eczema, which is called eczematous cheilitis, is an inflammation of the lips that appears as redness with dryness and scaling. lip eczema can also be called lip dermatitis. Your lips might be divided into three zones: the outer zone comprising the skin next to the lips, the vermilion margin and the mucosal aspect. The first two areas are commonly affected. The major causes of lip eczema are atopic dermatitis or allergic contact reactions.

What are the causes of Lip Eczema?

Lip Eczema and Dermatitis all can be divided into two major groups based on the cause:

It is caused due to an inherent characteristic of the person. Atopic dermatitis is the most common example of this group.

It is caused due to something from outside the body. This group can be subdivided into:

1.Irritant contact cheilitis:

The major cause of this type is lip licking. There are other common causes of irritant cheilitis including cosmetics, foods and environmental factors.

2. Allergic contact cheilitis:

A relevant allergic reaction is identified in one quarter, at least, of cases of lip eczema. There are many common sources of allergens including lipsticks and other lip-care products, toothpastes and dental materials, foods, medications and nail varnish.

Commonly, a combination of factors is present. However, Sometimes no cause can be identified.

The Symptoms of Lip Eczema:

Lip eczema appears as redness, dryness, scaling and fissuring. The angle of the mouth is often also involved. The most commonly affected parts of the lips are the perioral skin and vermilion margin.

It is important to note your skin and mucosal lesions elsewhere as these may give a clue about the main cause.

How to Identify Lip Eczema?

In order to narrow down the list of possible causes, you can check careful history and do examination. Examination should include not only the lips, but inside the mouth and your skin in general.

You need to do patch testing. Testing should include the standard series and extended series such as for lipsticks, toothpastes and others as suggested from the history. Moreover, it’s important to test the patient’s own products. The Photopatch testing may be useful. Also, consider the relevance of positive reactions.

If patch testing is negative and prick testing may be positive, this may indicate a contact urticaria.

How to Treat Lip Eczema?

Treatment depends totally on the cause. You need to check the exogenous cause, and then, this should be avoided. If this does not result in improvement, check another factor like a second allergen, irritant or endogenous cause.

For atopic cheilitis, you may need to apply moisturizers and topical corticosteroids.

Home Remedies To Get Rid Of Lip Eczema

Following are home remedies and food prescriptions that will help allay the symptoms of eczema effectively:

  • Shea Butter:

It is an effective way to treat lip eczema and to keep your skin moisturized.

Do massage to your lips and leave overnight. You may apply shea butter as often as you want to keep away from excessive drying, cracking and crusting of the lips.

  • Flaxseeds:

Flax seeds is an excellent reedy for eczema. These seeds are rich in omega 3 fatty acids, which are known to battle the symptoms of eczema; and also prevent exacerbation. Keep having 3-5 teaspoons of roasted seeds on a daily basis.

  • Incorporate carrots, papayas, mangoes and prunes in your daily menu:

These are loaded with vitamin A which is an important nutrient for a healthy and disease free skin.

  • Omega-3 fatty acid supplement:

Take an omega-3 fatty acid supplement to make up for any dietary deficiencies. Talk to your doctor about the dosage that would be suitable for you.

  • Essential Oils:

Aromatherapy is effective for eczema and dermatitis too. Essential oils such as carrot seed oil, lavender oil and chamomile oil have healing and soothing properties. Blend together 2 drops of any one of the essential oils with 10 drops of a carrier oil such as avocado oil. Apply this frequently.

  • Avoid sodium laurel sulfate or paraben:

Eczema occurs due to an allergic reaction to things that you use in everyday life. Soaps, shampoos, lipsticks are etiological factors. Avoid anything that has sodium laurel sulfate or paraben, these can trigger eczema.

Certain foods can also be eczema triggers. You should identify your individual trigger and steadily avoid it. Once you steer clear of that particular food, the symptoms will gradually subside and you will not have relapses as well.

  • Avoid harsh chemicals in your skin care routine. Opt for mild, organic natural products which are gentle and won’t set off any allergic reaction.
  • Make lifestyle alteration. Avoid smoking, do not consume alcohol, keep away from spicy food which irritates the lips, and manage your stress well.
  • If you would like a more definitive treatment, consider a dermal Infusion treatment to plump and hydrate your lips. This treatment is designed to gently exfoliate dry lips with a diamond tip, while infusing ultra hydrating hyaluronic acid serums deep into the lips for the ultimate in hydration therapy.

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