How to Get Rid of a Swollen Lip or Reduce the Swelling Fast

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How do you get rid of, or reduce swollen lips from biting, kissing, trauma,  pimples, bumps, cold sores, canker sores, injuries, sunburn, piercing, Restylane injection, braces, allergies, etc., fast? Are there good treatment and remedies that work quickly, fast, overnight, in an hour or effectively?


Before we look at how to treatments, let us see the main causes of this problem i.e., lip swelling  that can occur in the lower, upper, lower half, upper half, on corners, on one spot or both lips) is usually caused by many things that include:

  • Allergies to various things including lip care products, foods, pet dander, latex, medications (e.g. penicillin), pollen grains, etc.
  • Injuries and trauma such as biting it, insect bites, from braces, burning, being punched, kissing, piercing, brass playing, Restylane injections,  surgeries, etc.
  • Stomatitis, infections, and conditions such as cold sores, canker sores, angular cheilitis, cellulitis, etc.
  • Harsh weather conditions such as excessive sunlight (sunburn), dryness, windy or cold
  • Pimples, bumps, ingrown hair, etc.
  • Severe malnutrition
  • Some disease and conditions such as lip cancer, obesity, diabetes, reaction to blood transfusion, organ failures, among others.

How to get rid or reduce swelling

In this section, we are going to look at various ways including treatments, home remedies and other ways to fix this problem. Of course, the treatment options or remedies you go for will at times depend on what caused the swelling.

We will begin with general ways to reduce or fix swellings before going to a few specific caused related treatments, remedies, and fixes.

1. A cold compress and ice cubes

The first way to soothe and reduce swelling is to apply a cold compress using ice cubes or cold spoons placed in a freezer. You need to wrap your ice cubes in a clean washcloth or a paper towel and gently apply it on the affected area.

Do this for about 10-15 minutes followed by a break of 10-15 minutes before repeating until the swelling begins to reduce.  Avoid using ice cubes directly on your skin since they can cause skin tissue damage.

This simple home remedy is very effective for most swellings including those from a punch, burning, trauma, kissing, cold sores (swelling from fever blisters), canker sores, insect bites, etc. since it will soothe the affected area and bring down the swelling.

2. Turmeric powder

Turmeric is known for its excellent healing and antiseptic properties. You can use turmeric powder to get rid of a swollen lip.

To use it, mix turmeric powder, cold water, and fuller’s earth to make a simple herbal ointment which you can apply to the swollen area.  Let it stay there until it dries before you can carefully wash it off with warm water. Do this twice a day.

3. Aloe vera gel

If they are not only swollen but also red and inflamed, you need to use aloe vera gel since it has excellent anti-inflammatory properties. It will soothe the burning sensation. Aloe vera is ideal if you have insect bites (such as mosquito bites), sunburned ones with blisters, oral herpes, as well as those swollen due to an allergic reaction.

Gently massage the affected area with aloe vera (either a gel or extract some juice from a fresh aloe vera plant) two to three times a day.

4. Tea tree oil and aloe vera

Instead of using tea tree oil only, you can also mix it with tea tree oil in ratios of 2:1 and apply the mixture to the affected area. Leave it there until it dries before washing with cold water. Repeat this treatment for some times in a day if the swelling does not reduce.

Tea tree oil and aloe vera mixture will ensure any dermal inflammation including the one in your mouth is calmed down.

However, ensure you use dilute tea tree oil. You can dilute it with olive or coconut oil i.e. add a few drops of pure tea tree oil to about a teaspoon of aloe vera or coconut oil and apply it on the affected area.

5. Baking soda 

Using baking soda is a great way to treat cases of insect bites, allergic reactions, and fever blisters. To use it, take about 1 tablespoon of baking soda and add water until it forms a thick paste. Apply the paste on the affected place and let it stay there for up to 10 minutes. You can then wash it off with cold water.

6. Honey

Just like turmeric powder, honey has antibacterial and natural healing properties. It works magic especially for people who want to get fast results such as overnight or in a day or two.

Take a teaspoon of honey and apply it to the affected area using a fresh cotton ball. Let is remain in place for 20 minutes before washing it off with cold water. Repeat this treatment 2-3 times a day.

7. Applying tea bags

Another way to how to fix a swollen lip is the use of black tea bags that contain tannins which have astringent properties that will cause body tissue constriction and reduce the swelling. This is a good home remedy if you want almost immediate results i.e. a fast home remedy.

To use it, soak a black tea bag in warm water for about 10 minutes, let it cool before applying it to the affected area. Do this 3-4 times, severally in a day if you want quick results.

8. Salt and witch hazel

Mixing 2 parts of hazel extract to one part of salt is great in reducing any external body swelling including the one on lips, soothing any pain and cleaning any cut. Apply the mixture on the affected area for 15-20 minutes before washing it off with cold water. Repeat the process until you notice some change.

9. Coconut oil

Coconut oil helps heal and reduce lip swelling fast, inflammation, excessive dryness, as well as curing any damaged skin. To use coconut oil, apply a layer on the affected area, three or four times daily and leave it there.

10. Warm salt compress

Salty water is good when the swelling is from injury especially if you are punched, have a piercing, injections, bit your lips, you got hit by a blunt object or other physical injuries or traumas that left cuts behind. You will simply mix 1 tablespoon of salt in a cup of warm water and apply it to the affected area. It might cause a little sting but it will help in faster healing.

The warm compress will ensure there is no accumulation of blood in the swollen area. This will consequently reduce swelling in the affected area.

11. Check your diet and use vitamin E capsule or lip balm

To help stop the swelling, ensure you get a balanced diet since lack of some vitamins can cause this problem, especially vitamins B and C. Eat foods with vitamin B such as bananas, oats, legumes, liver, turkey, legumes, etc. as they will ensure a quick recovery.  Furthermore, before going to bed, apply a lip balm containing vitamins E or apply liquid vitamin E capsule.

Drinking a lot of water can also be helpful since it will ensure your lips do not get dehydrated i.e. they remain moisturized. Water can also help reduce swelling levels.

12. Other remedies and treatments

  • Avoid licking them since this can worsen the swelling.
  • Drink ginger tea and add ginger to your diet as it helps reduce chances of edema that and consequently infections.
  • Ice them using bromelin or Benadryl solutions
  • If you have swellings due to acne, see details on getting rid of lip pimples.

For fast results – overnight or within an hour

Walking around with an enlarged, fattened or swollen lips can be so embarrassing. You want to get rid of the swelling immediately. We have seen so many ways for quicker results. To get rid of the swelling quickly, you need to deal with the underlying cause as well as try various methods of reducing the swelling itself.

Most of the remedies such as the use of cold packs, antihistamine (if caused by allergies), use of honey, aloe vera can help reduce mild swelling in a few hours.

1. By insect bites and stings

If you have swellings from insects bites and stings, you need to select a treatment that will soothe the inflammation and neutralize any poison in case of a sting e.g. bee or wasp sting.

Some of the ideal treatments will be aloe vera gel to reduce inflammation, use of OTC antihistamines such as diphenhydramine as well as OTC anti-inflammatory medications such as naproxen and ibuprofen.

2. From oral herpes

Swelling and blistering from oral herpes or cold sores will typically disappear after 7-14 days. However, you can use a cold compress to reduce the swelling as well as apply some Vaseline jelly to keep the area moisturized and reduce swelling too.

To get rid of swelling blistering, go for some of the over the counter medication or ask your doctor to prescribe antiviral oral medications as well as some topical creams and ointments to deal with this problem.

3. From allergic reactions

If you have swollen, red and itchy lips for no reason, it could be caused by allergies. Avoid contact with allergens e.g. some foods that cause the allergy, pet dander, latex, lip care products some medications, pollen grains, etc.

Secondly, reduce the swelling from allergies, ensure you get an antihistamine such as Benadryl to reduce the allergic reaction as well as apply cold compresses. For excessive swelling, you might be required to take oral corticosteroids for fast action.

If you suffer from an extreme allergic reaction, that will have other severe symptoms other than the swelling, see a doctor since some allergic reactions such as anaphylaxis allergy is life-threatening and it can cause death.

4. From trauma and injuries

In case you have a swelling due to trauma or injuries such as biting your lips, Restylane injections, surgery, botox, kissing, dental braces, piercings, brass playing, being hit by a blunt object or a punched, you need to carefully assess the damage caused by injury and stop bleeding in case you have tissue damages or cuts.

Secondly, apply hot packs or cold compresses to soothe and reduce or bring down the swelling. In case of serious tissue damage and/or cuts (or busted lips), see your doctor for further treatment or stitching if it is necessary. Oral antibiotics might be recommended to avoid possibilities of any secondary infections caused by bacteria.

When to see a doctor

If all the above treatments do not yield results and the condition seems to worsen, you should consider seeing a doctor. Furthermore, in case of a severe case that affects eating, breathing or talking and it spreads beyond the affected area, see your doctor.

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  1. How long does it take for the very, very sore white patches inside my mouth go away? They said I had angiodema from Lisoprill 4 weeks ago, followed by tx, then hospitalized 3 weeks ago with dehydration (couldn’t eat or drink) and acute renal failure (no dialysis).Renal is ok now. It seems like I have some new sores inside my mouth today and sore lower lip (which I had before). In addition to OTC that I’ve been using the ENT started me on a corticosteriod dental paste a week ago. Went the oral prednisone route…I’m so frustrated and hurting!

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