What Causes Swollen Lips?

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Lips are an organ on the faces of humans and animals. Lips protrude, move and are used for eating, drinking and speaking. Swelling of the lips may be caused by simple problems such as the skin's being dry. However, the condition could be a sign of a more serious health issue such as an allergy.

Function

The skin on the lips does not have hair, sweat glands or a protective layer. The lips do not have a function to sweat or create warmth. Therefore, the lips may dry out, become chapped or crack easier. For these reasons, the lips may swell temporarily.

Injury or Irritation

The lips may also swell after colliding or being hit against the teeth. The tissue in the lip may become bruised by the teeth. This can be caused by a sports injury to the mouth or an accident.

Allergic Reaction

The lips may also swell because the body is being affected by an allergic reaction. An allergy causes the immune system to overreact and protect itself from the invader it doesn't recognize or want entering the body. Swelling is one of the effects.

Environmental Factors

Environmental factors such as the temperature or weather may cause the lips to swell. Extreme amounts of heat on the skin can speed up the drying-out process of the lips. Similarly, excessive cold temperatures can cause chapped, swollen and sensitive lips.

Medications

There are several medications to look for when you're concerned about swollen lips. These medications include Bacitracin, AK-Tracin, Bacitin and Isocover. Seek a doctor's advice before taking any of these medications.

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