Blog: How I fixed my severe exfoliative cheilitis!
by backwiththetea

exfoliative cheilitis fixed

An exfoliative cheilitis success story. Hope it helps!

Date:   5/17/2019 12:18:22 AM   ( 31 mon ) ... viewed 281 times

I don't want to bore anyone with all of the details but I will summarize as efficiently as I can.

A year of my life was spent with a severe case of exfoliative cheilitis all over my lips and the sides of my mouth. (called angular cheilitis) It was ugly. It was painful; but most importantly, it was socially crippling.

I spent endless hours researching a cure. I tried everything: calendula, diet, supplements, vitamin E, scrubbing lips, letting lips "heal," lanolin, soap, cortisone, exercise, etc.. I saw NINE doctors until one recognized the problem.

He took one look at me and said this is a "prolonged allergic reaction." He gave me a steroid based ointment and we did an allergy test which revealed I had developed an allergy to metal, lanolin, and cocamidopropyl betaine. (which is a fancy word for the foaming agent in soap)

I had the remainder of my braces taken off that week and had immediate relief. I stopped using soap and lanolin on my lips. (as previous doctors had advised) and only used petroleum mixed with the steroid based ointment. Within weeks my year long nightmare was over.

I have not had any recurrence at all and have had healthy lips for five years now. I need to avoid my allergens. I use plastic utensils instead of silverware, an alternative soap, and petroleum instead of lanolin. I have to be careful with makeups, as these normally contain titanium dioxide and occasionally lanolin. To me it is all worth it to never see that nasty yellow crust on my lips ever again.

Everyone's case is different and what worked for me might not work for you but it may be an avenue worth exploring if you haven't yet. Allergies can develop later in life and may not present in the classic way. (My theory for myself is that after surgery on my head, my body developed an aversion to metal, lubricants, and soap, since these were likely used in that time frame and the exfoliative cheilitis started shortly after the surgery)

I know how physically and psychologically expensive this condition can be. I hope everyone can find their way out.

Some things that helped for me in the meantime: humidifier, scarf in the winter, "trimming" growths, straws, no smoke, and a shoulder to cry on.

Good luck out there. XOXO

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