Swollen lips

Swollen lips Definition : Lip edema or Swollen lips is when one or both lips get distend or enlarge beyond their regular size. The swelling is caused by a buildup of fluid, or inflammation caused in the inner lining of the lip tissue. It can be caused due to a number of reasons, including illness, injury, certain medicines or allergies.

Symptoms of swollen lips

Swollen or “fat” lips can be enervating and painful. In some cases, people may have difficulty:

  • Eating
  • Drinking
  • Talking
  • Opening their mouth
  • Lip discoloration
  • Blisters
  • Chapping
  • Fatigue
  • Pain
  • Headache
  • High temperature or chills

Causes of swollen lips

Swollen lips may have a spectrum of different causes, ranging from mild conditions to more serious disorders. They are as follows:

  • Sunburn – lip swelling can be a result of excessive exposure to sunlight. In extreme condition, you might even suffer from swollen upper and lower lip along with blisters.
  • Pimple and Acne – The other common cause of swollen lips is pimples (acne pimple). Ingrown hair can also be a reason for the same.
  • Lip infections, Angioedema and stomatitis – there are various infections such as cellulitis, canker sores, cold sores, and angular cheilitis which are known to cause common lip swelling, include lower and upper lips.
  • Severe Malnutrition – lack of some basic essential vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C and B can also make lips to swell.
  • Trauma and Injuries – trauma physical and injuries on the bottom lip can cause swelling of the lips (‘fat lip)’. Common injuries and traumas could be caused from biting, extensive and harsh kissing, insect bites, playing brass, burning, dental braces, being punched or hit by some blunt object, lip piercing, lip surgeries, Botox, etc.
  • Allergic reactions – Some allergic reactions can leave the lower and upper lip swollen. Allergies could be due to antigens such as lip care cosmetics, pet dander, latex, food, some medications, etc.
  • Diseases and conditions – lip cancer, organ failure, obesity, and blood transfusion could also be reasons behind lip swelling. In such condition, proper medical attention is required.
  • Harsh weather conditions such as excessive wind or dryness or an extremely cold weather can also cause swollen and rough lips.

These are some of the common causes of swollen lips. There could various other causes including chapped lips, dental infections, herpangina, sleeping with putting head down, etc. It is advised to get a proper medical checkup in case you are not certain what could be the cause since one cannot have lip swelling for no reason.