The lips are one of the most visible parts of the human body. One of the main functions of the lips is that they serve as an opening for the food intake. Lip muscles are part of what is used to produce facial expression. A swollen lip will get in the way of an attractive facial expression.
The treatment of swollen lips starts with recognizing its cause. There are various causes that bring about swollen lips, the most common of which are trauma, allergies and insect bites. Understanding the source of the swelling will help you treat those beautiful lips effectively.
The most common first aid treatment for swollen lips is to apply a cold compress, especially if it is caused by a hard fall or any strong impact. Immediately apply the cold compress on the swollen part. Avoid direct application of ice. You need to wrap the ice with a cloth while applying it. The ice may cause your lips to stick causing further damage, if it is freezing. Remember how it was when you would stick your tongue in the freezer and it got stuck? That can also happen to your lip, and you want to prevent that.
If no ice is available, anything cold will do the trick. Cold bottled water, a frozen fruit, spoon or a fork even a cold coin will do. The important thing is to apply cold treatment immediately after the actual trauma or injury. The cold treatment reduces swelling and pain. You can keep the cold compress for about 10 to 30 minutes.
Allergic reaction can also cause lips to swell. You may be allergic to specific foods or other allergens such as dust, animal hair or pollens. If you begin to feel itchiness on your lips with a tingling sensation, most likely it will get swollen in a couple of minutes. Anti-histamines are prescribed for this type of medical condition. This situation may call for a trip to the emergency room or your physician. Recalling the last food that you ate or the environment you were in will definitely help your physician diagnose and provide you the right medication.
Another cause of swollen lips can be insect bites and bee stings, and these can really be painful. Cold compress can help bring an immediate soothing relief for the pain or a cream gel like Aloe Vera. Creams containing local anesthetic and hydrocortisone will be very helpful too. If the swelling does not subside in a couple of days, it is best to seek medical help. However, if you are stung by several insects and you cannot breathe properly, urgent medical attention is required.
Perhaps the most dangerous cause of swollen lips is poisoning. There are some plants that can cause this, such as Nephthytis and Calla Lily. Both of these plants contain harmful chemicals such as calcium oxalate crystals that are highly toxic when ingested. It can even be fatal if taken in excessively. One of the symptoms of these poisoning, is lip itching and swelling. The severity of this situation is best left to the care of medical practitioners.