There are several ways to relieve chapped lips, and what method you use depends on what is causing the chapping. Sometimes chapped lips are caused by sun or wind damage, in which case, you’ll find some relief by using methods that treat minor sunburns. A little aloe vera gel, which is edible, or a lip balm containing vitamin E and aloe vera can have you on the way to nice smooth lips again. To prevent chapped lips in the future, don’t just use sunscreen on your face when you’re outdoors. Also use a lip balm, lipstick or gloss that has SPF protection in it. Generally you want the highest protection you can find, but at minimum have an SPF of 15, and reapply often.
Sometimes chapped lips can signal that you’re not getting enough water. Slight dehydration can manifest as lip chapping. You may find you can relieve chapped lips permanently by getting an adequate supply of water, at least eight glasses daily.
You may find that increasing your vitamin supply can relieve chapped lips. In particular, chapped lips can be a symptom of mild to major anemia. This may mean your body is not getting enough iron. You may want to use an iron supplement, and you can enhance absorption of iron by getting extra vitamin C in your diet. If you smoke and get chapped lips frequently, mild anemia and vitamin C deficiency is often the primary cause. If you can, quit smoking to reduce chapped lips, and supplement your diet with vitamin C rich foods. Vitamin B can also help reduce chapping, and you can take vitamin E capsules, open them, and apply them directly to sore lips.
If your chapped lips are very red or swollen, you may be harboring a bacterial infection. It can help to use a lip balm with antibiotic, or simply apply an antibiotic ointment to the lips to relieve chapped lips. When this treatment doesn’t resolve the problem within a few days, you should see a doctor, particularly if there are any blisters or sores around the lips. Sometimes staph infections can occur on the lips or around the mouth and may require oral antibiotics to relieve chapped lips and the infection.
When you’re in good health, you may simply want to remember that you can relieve chapped lips or prevent them by getting adequate hydration, using a good sunscreen on your lips, and if you like, using a lip balm a few times a day. This normally prevents most cases of lip chapping and will help keep your lips smooth and happy.