Swollen Lips: 12 Possible Causes

In most cases, it is possible to solve the problem with a home remedy, but attention should be paid to the additional symptoms. Many have already experienced swollen lips, a condition caused by many factors: from a bump to an allergic reaction to an oral problem. While swollen lips shouldn’t be a cause for concern, it’s not a symptom to ignore either. If the swelling is very noticeable, accompanied by other symptoms, or lasts for a long time, you should get checked by your doctor. In most cases, it is possible to solve the problem with some home remedy, such as cold packs. Other times it is only necessary to avoid contact with the triggering agent. Let’s take a look at the leading causes of this problem.


The ambient temperature affects the state of the lips. Too much heat or excessive cold can lead to swollen or chapped lips. Some people are more sensitive, but it is recommended to keep this area well-hydrated in all cases.

Injury Or Contusion

Bruising is another possible cause. Many times this type of trauma goes unnoticed, but the effect manifests itself in the form of swelling. It is not uncommon to accidentally bite your lip.

Dryness Or Sunburn

The lips also swell after excessive sun exposure. This causes a burn, and one of its symptoms is swelling. It also happens when you drink a liquid that is too hot. Acidic or spicy foods also generate this effect, as in the case of lemon or pineapple.

Reaction To Chemicals

Caustic chemicals can lead to swollen lips. It can be contacted by splashing cleaning products that reach the mouth area. The swelling is usually accompanied by blistering, pain, and burning.


Allergies are one of the most common causes. When the allergen is a food, swelling appears within two hours on average. The reaction may be quicker if it is another agent, such as a drug or plant. If you have difficulty breathing, you should go to the emergency room.


Cold sores cause the most common infection in this part of the body. In this case, you will notice a lesion with small blisters, and you will feel a tingling sensation and numbness. Usually, only one of the two lips swells. Other infections, such as candidiasis, can cause this symptom.


Mucocele is a cystic formation that affects the mouth and often causes the lips to swell. It cannot be drained because it is found in the inner layers of the skin. It is the result of a ruptured blood vessel or a decisive blow. Sometimes it goes away on its own, but it can also become chronic. It causes no other symptoms.

Oral Disorders

Dental abscesses or phlegmons are concentrations of pus that cause a lot of pain and inflammation in the surrounding area. Small lumpy formations in the gums usually accompany them.


Puffy lips can also be a symptom of impetigo. It is an infectious skin disease that causes fluid-filled blisters. When they dry, a yellowish crust appears. It is more common in children.


During adaptation to orthodontic appliances, they can swell the lips. This is especially true with brackets. It is normal to rub the hooks to the oral mucosa at first to cause inflammation, canker sores, or sores.


Puffy lips can also be the body’s reaction to stress. At the same time, anxiety states increase bruxism or the involuntary grinding of the teeth, and one of its effects could be swelling of the lips.

Other Causes For Swollen Lips

In addition to the factors already mentioned, other possible causes are:

  1. Preeclampsia.
  2. Use of piercings.
  3. Insect bite.
  4. Mouth cancer.
  5. Hepatic, renal, or cardiac insufficiency.

Swollen Lips: What To Do?

Treatment depends on the cause. If the source is a trauma or a burn, simply apply cold compresses to the area to get relief and deflate. Instead, it is necessary to consult the doctor in these four situations:

  1. When the ailment lasts for more than three days.
  2. If it is accompanied by swelling of the face or other body parts.
  3. If breathing is difficult.
  4. In the presence of fever.

In case of dental problems, it is recommended to visit the dentist as soon as possible. Poor oral health leads to swollen lips. It can have more severe consequences.


Similar Articles