A cut on the side of the lips is also called angular cheilitis. This condition is characterized by red and swelling patches on the side of the mouth or can happens on both sides at the same time.
Symptoms of cut on the side of the lips
- At first, soreness and irritation in the affected area
- Crusty patches
- In addition, scaly texture
- Lastly, the lips feel dry and difficulty in eating
- Fungal infections
- Chapped lips
- Viral or bacterial infection
- Deficiency in zinc or iron
- Poor fitting dentures
- Poor diet
- Allergies to products such as lipstick or toothpaste
- Severe dryness of the area and peeling of the mucosa of the lips
- Autoimmune diseases such as diabetes
- Habitual licking of the lips
- Wash hands properly before cleaning the wound to prevent the risk of infecting the area with bacteria and delays the healing of the condition.
- Clean the affected area using a mild unscented soap and water to eliminate any bacteria, debris and irritants to lessen the risk of developing infections and for fast healing of the condition. Avoid using scented soap.
- Apply cold compress on the affected area to lessen the pain, and the swelling. Cold compression increases flow of blood in the area and for fast healing.
- Rinse the affected area using salt water solution. Fill a cup with lukewarm water, add a tablespoon of salt. Mix them well and then soak a cotton ball in the solution and then apply it directly to the affected lip and applying a gentle pressure. Repeat the process for several minutes to lessen the burning sensations and the swelling. Salt has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that disinfects the wound and eliminates the bacteria that can cause an infection. Another alternative is swishing the solution around the mouth to eliminate excess bacteria or debris still present in the wound.
- Apply moisturizers and ointments on the lips to prevent licking of the lip and lessen maceration of the skin.
- Dab on topical antibiotics, antifungal and steroids to lessen the infections and the pain.
- Apply anti-infective agents or barrier ointments such as zinc oxide or petrolatum to prevent making the affected area wet and lessens the re-epithelialization.
- Make a paste by mixing 3 tablespoons of baking soda and 1 teaspoon water. Mix them until it becomes the consistency of a paste. Apply the paste on the affected lip and let remain in the area for at least a few minutes to lessen the swelling and the pain. Rinse it off using cold water.
The details posted on this page on cuts on the lips is for learning purposes only. To learn more about the usual causes and how it is managed, enroll in a first aid course with one of our training providers.