The term “fat lip” is really slang for an injury to the tissue of the lips. The tissue can be damaged as a result of trauma, whether a blow or a laceration. Insect bits can also result in fat lips, although this is often due to an allergic reaction. If the injury is not severe, then it most likely won’t require medical attention and can be treated at home.
Assessing the damage
The first thing that should be done in the case of a fat lip is to carefully check the injury to see just how bad it is. A blow to the mouth can cause the tissue inside the mouth to be gashed by the teeth. If this is the case, or if there appears to be damage to the teeth or gums, then seeking medical help would be advisable. If the cut on the inside of the lip is small you can treat it yourself. After your assessment is complete you can start treating the injury.
The Inside Of The Mouth
The good news is that cuts inside the mouth tend to heal quickly, often without any help. A warm salt-water solution used twice daily is usually enough to speed the healing process. A glass of water with a few drops of grapefruit seed extract acts as a great disinfectant. If the cut continues to bleed or is more than half an inch long it may be best to see a doctor. While the cut is healing, avoid spicy foods that may irritate the area and cause discomfort or swelling.
Treating Your Fat Lips
Opinions on dealing with a fat lip vary slightly but the general consensus is that a cold compress will bring the swelling down. Simply crush a few ice cubes in a washcloth and apply to the affected area. This can be applied to the outside as well as the inside of the lip. This also makes the area numb thereby by reducing the pain as well.
Keep in mind that the swelling should not be iced for too long. Ten to fifteen minute icings with roughly the same amount of time in between should be sufficient. Keeping the ice on it for too long could make the problem worse. This can be repeated two or three times per day, but the speed with which the swelling goes down depends on the extent of the injury.
While there are medicated ointments available for cuts on the lips, you may want to opt for a natural remedy. Aloe Vera and tea tree oil are both useful for treating minor cuts. Apply two to three times daily to the cut to help speed up the healing process.
When it comes to treating injuries yourself, common sense should always be your guide. A doctor should look at any injury that appears deep or is infected. Since getting a fat lip is a fairly common occurrence it is certainly no cause for alarm, unless the lip remains swollen for days. To prevent infection and speed healing, treat the area quickly and ensure that your hands are clean before treating the injured lips.
February 5th, 2009
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