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Skin Care and Diseases

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06/06/2006

Question:

Hi im 28 year women and this is the second time since i moved to seattle my skin around the lips its burning and its red and its dry !! i cant use any product bec.it will burn

Answer:

It sounds as though you have either perioral dermatitis or just severe chapped lips.  Do you lick your lips?  If you do, this may be a contributing problem.  I usually suggest that patients clean the area with very mild nonirritating cleansers, dry thoroughly, and use lip balms....Carmex is one that we favor because I have fewer adverse reactions.  Topical low-strength steroids may be needed for a short period of time.  You need to probably see your dentist to be certain that the dentifrices and mouthwashes that you may be using are not contributing to your problem, and producing a contact dermatitis.

I would urge you to see your board certified dermatologist for a careful review and possible biopsy; and I would review your difficulties with your dentist. 

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Response by:

Charles L Heaton, MD
Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati