While generally not serious, a fat lip can be an embarrassing and painful injury. A fat lip can be the result of multiple incidents, including a blow to the face or an insect bite or sting. The swelling results from trauma to the soft tissue of the lip. If you have a fat lip, you probably want to see results as fast as possible. That is possible with a quick, step-by-step approach.
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Access the damage. Look in a mirror or have a friend examine your lip. Pull your lip down to examine the inside. Look for bleeding or an open wound that may need professional medical attention.
Rinse your mouth out with clean water to cleanse the wound. If possible, use bottled or distilled water mixed with salt.
Make a cold compress. Place a few ice cubes in a sealable sandwich bag. You can also wrap the ice in a paper towel. If available, use the cold compress available in most first aid kits.
Apply the cold compress to your lip. Hold it there for 15 minutes at a time with 15-minute breaks in between. Repeat until the swelling starts to subside.
If your fat lip is the result of a bee sting, take an over-the-counter antihistamine like diphenhydramine. If the swelling or pain is particularly bad, take an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory, like ibuprofen or naproxen. Follow the dosing instructions on the package or bottle.
Before bed, apply a lip balm containing vitamin E. You can make your own by buying vitamin E liquid capsules, pricking the capsule with a pin and spreading the liquid on your lips.
- Stoddard County Public Health Center: A Parent's Guide to First Aid
- American Medical Association Handbook of First Aid and Emergency Care; American Medical Association; 2009