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Do You Need to Worry about Cheilosis?

Posted on 2/8/2021 by Dr. Michael Wockenfus
Do You Need to Worry about Cheilosis?If the corners of the mouth become cracked, they may bleed and split. When this happens, it can be challenging to talk, eat food, or yawn. This type of condition can happen to all ages. It goes by the name of cheilosis, cheilitis, angular cheilosis, perleche, and angular cheilitis. Generally, you can treat the condition easily if you know the reason for its development.

Why Cheilosis Develops

Cheilosis or cheilitis can develop for one of various reasons. If dentures do not fit well, they can cause the lips to become misaligned, which can affect the corners of the mouth. Children who suck their thumbs can also develop cheilosis, as the saliva often pools at the corners of the mouth and inflames and irritates the site. A nutritional deficiency may also be the blame, usually a deficit of B vitamins, especially riboflavin, or a lack of iron. Oral candidiasis or strep bacteria may cause cheilosis, as can a skin reaction, such as eczema. Besides cracking and bleeding at the corners of the mouth, cheilosis may lead to the formation of a crust at the mouth's corners.

Treatment Options

The treatment used for cheilosis depends on the reason for the condition. For example, a denture wearer with cheilosis may resolve the problem by getting new, better-fitting dentures. If cheilosis develops from an oral infection, we can prescribe an antifungal or antibiotic cream to clear up the condition. Should cheilosis result from a nutritional deficiency, a supplement may be recommended, and dietary changes may be discussed. Sometimes a topical steroid is used to get rid of inflammation. If we discover that cheilosis has formed because of an allergic reaction, we may recommend that the patient stop the use of the irritant. Therefore, the methods used for treating cheilosis depend on the reason for the condition.

If you have this condition, ask us about your treatment options and tell us why you believe you may have developed skin irritation. Give us a call to book an appointment now.

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Michael J. Wockenfus, DDS created a blog to educate the community. It is your resource for all dentistry questions. Learn and read topics in the blog here!
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