Lip Infection: 7 Causes, 5 Symptoms, 18 Home Remedies

Lip infection is painful sores or blisters that form either on the inside or the outside of the mouth. In a worst-case scenario, they form on both sides. In addition to being painful, they cause a lot of discomforts making it hard to eat or, drink hot foods.

Lip infection can be as a result of fungal infection, bacterial infection, yeast infection or even viral infection. An example of a lip infection is canker sores. Canker sores are very painful.

Causes of lip infection:

lip infection
Lip infection
Image source: nlda.org
  1. Fungal infection

Fungal infection is mainly caused by yeast, and it occurs on the corners of the mouth. This lip infection is characterised with cracks at the sides of the mouth, swelling, pain, and creamy foam at the edges of the mouth.

Lip fungus occurs when bacteria’s in the body are above average. When bacteria’s are above average in the body, they trigger the excessive growth of Candida which causes the yeast infection.

  1. Viral infection

Viral lip infections are common. The most popular viral infection is oral herpes which is caused by herpes simplex virus. It is associated with very painful sores in the mouth, lips and even on the tongue.

Oral herpes is a communicable disease meaning that it can be passed from one person to another. You put yourself at risk if you share a toothbrush with an infected person.

Herpes simplex virus is of two types, Herpes Simplex Virus 1 and Herpes simplex Virus two. When you engage in oral sex with an infected person, you are exposing yourself to Herpes Simplex Virus which causes painful blisters and sores on your mouth and lips.

  1. Allergic reactions

Allergic reactions to medications, foods, pollen grains, bee stings or spices cause lip infection. Some of the foods known to cause an allergic reaction to lips include nuts, acidic foods, shellfish, some dairy products, and sesame seeds.

You should note that not everyone is allergic to these foods.

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If you are suffering from lip infection caused by allergic reactions your lips, mouth, and throat swell, you may feel itchiness on the eyes, and you might also experience difficulties in breathing and swallowing foods and fluids.

  1. Exposure to cold

When you expose yourself to cold, you are at risk of contracting a lip infection. Lip infection as a result of exposure to cold is mostly referred to as cold sores. These sores appear in the mouth and also on the lips. They are painful and form blisters that have fluids in them.

  1. Vitamin deficiency

Another cause of lip infection is a vitamin deficiency. When your body lacks Vitamin A, riboflavin, and vitamin C, lips crack, bleed and become very dry.

  1. Lack of zinc

Lack of zinc also causes lip infection. When you don’t have sufficient zinc in your body, your immune system goes down. When this happens your body is not in a position to fight infections, contracting a lip infection becomes very easy.

  1. Improper dentures

Wearing of dentures that are of the wrong size for example very tight or loose dentures cause discomforts, headaches, sores, and blisters.

If you don’t take care of this problem early enough, you will contract mouth infection which can spread out causing a lip infection.

Symptoms of Lip infection:

The distinctive signs of lip infection include:

  • Pain in the lips and mouth sores
  • Swollen lips
  • Blisters on the lips
  • Fluid-filled sores
  • Cracking lips

Home remedies for lip infection:

Lip infection is very painful, causes discomfort and are not appealing to the eye. The only way out of this pain caused by lip infection is treatment. You can either get medication or use home remedies to treat the infection. These home remedies include:

  1. Turmeric paste

Turmeric possesses antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. To manage your lip infection, prepare a turmeric paste and slowly apply it to the affected areas on your lips, ones it dries rinse it off.

The anti-inflammatory property will ease swelling of the lips as the antiseptic property disinfects the sores, inhibits the growth of bacteria and prevents secondary infections.

  1. Yoghurt

Yoghurt is an excellent remedy for treating the bacterial infection on lips. Yoghurt contains probiotics which kill the infection-causing bacteria.

The probiotics in yoghurt release hydrogen peroxide that kills Candida preventing the body from contracting infections.

To treat lip infection, apply some yoghurt on the infected areas and leave it there to perform healing.

  1. Avoid spicy foods

As we saw earlier, spicy foods are one of the causes of lip infection. To treat lip infection identify the spices that you are allergic to and avoid them. However, if you are not sure which spice you are allergic to it is better to avoid all spices.

  1. Take plenty of fluids

Cracking of lips is due to lack of enough fluids in the body. To correct this problem takes a lot of fluids especially water.

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Other benefits of taking a lot of water are that it boosts your immune system enabling your body to fight infections and flushes out toxins from the body.

  1. Gargle salt water

If you have a lip infection and there are sores in the mouth try gargling salt water. Salty water helps kill mouth sores, eases swelling and fights infections.

Add a 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a glass of water and gargle.

  1. Avoid biting lips

When you bite the infected lips, you worsen the situation. Once you bite the lips, you peel the skin opening the sores. Open sores are exposed to infections.

  1. Garlic and onion

Both garlic and onion are effective remedies for lip infection. Garlic contains anti-inflammatory properties while onions contain anti-fungal properties. You can use them independently, but for quick relief, it is better combining them.

Take the half onion and three cloves of garlic and add it to the mortar and pestle and crash it down until it forms a paste. Take that paste and apply it on the infected areas.

  1. Milk

Milk is a very good natural remedy for treating lip infection. Milk helps ease inflammation and fights infections.

To experience the healing power of milk apply it on the infected areas.

  1. Castor oil

Castor oil contains Undecylenic Acid which is essential for healing infections. To get the most out of it mix castor oil with milk or water and apply it directly to the affected areas. It will not be long before you receive the healing you anticipate.

  1. Black tea

Black tea contains tannin which has proteins that help ease swelling and discolouration. In addition to that, it has an astringent property that helps stop bleeding.

What you have to do is take a wet tea bag and place it on the infected area.

  1. Reducing sugar intake

When you have a lip infection, you should minimise sugar and if possible completely stop using it until you are healed. Bacteria take sugar as food. By taking sugar, you will be strengthening the bacteria making the situation worse.

  1. Coconut oil

Coconut is mostly used for skin, cooking and, accelerating the growth of hair. It can also be used to heal lip infection in infants.

You can apply the coconut oil on the infants’ lips by using cotton wool. Let’s face an infant will eat off the coconut oil from its lips within seconds. For faster results, apply the coconut oil on the nipple of a water bottle or your nipple as you breastfeed the infant.

  1. Tea tree oil

Tea tree oil contains anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties. It helps ease swelling of the lip, fights bacterial infection and also manages blisters and sores.

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You can use it by adding a few drops in your lip balm and applying as necessary.

  1. Maintain dental hygiene

It is essential to maintain healthy dental hygiene to treat lip infection. Bacteria feed on the food residue left in the mouth. To manage the bacterial lip infection, we must weaken the bacteria feeding the bacteria does not help.

Make it a habit of brushing your teeth after every meal.

  1. Increase iron intake

Iron is known for its ability to cure yeast infection. You should, therefore, increase your consumption of foods that contain iron. Foods rich in iron include dairy products, spinach, liver and, eggs.

  1. Cold compress

A cold compress helps ease inflammation on the infected lip. Cold compress gives fast results on swollen lips.

Take few ice cubes and wrap them with a small piece of cloth. Ones the cloth is wet slowly apply the ice cube on the infected lip.

  1. Honey

Honey appears in home remedies for treating nearly all diseases, and lip infection is not an exception. Honey contains antibacterial properties which are necessary for treating infections.

Just apply some honey on the infected area of your lips. Repeat this every day until you find relief.

  1. Apple cider vinegar

Vinegar helps kill bacteria. This property makes it fit to treat lip infection.

Add two spoonfuls of apple cider vinegar in a full glass of water. You can take this mixture up to two times a day until the infection is successfully treated.

Apple cider vinegar is very concentrated and should, therefore, be diluted before consumption.

From the above information, we can see that treating a lip infection is very easy and I would say inexpensive. Try whatever remedy works for you but, be on the lookout for allergens. Always remember that not everything will work for you. Take what works and leave the rest.

References:
  1. https://www.nlda.org/lip-infections-causes-symptoms-treatment-and-home-remedies/
  2. https://www.doctorshealthpress.com/general-health-articles/lip-infection-causes-symptoms-home-remedies/
  3. https://www.boldsky.com/health/wellness/2015/fourteen-home-remedies-for-lip-infections-066486.html
  4. https://www.livestrong.com/article/547267-the-use-of-salt-water-for-washing-the-mouth/

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