Cracked mouth corners, known scientifically as angular cheilitis, is a wound in the corner of the mouth that is caused by excessive development of fungi, or bacteria, due to the habit of constantly licking lips, for example. This wound can affect only one side of the mouth or both at the same time, causing symptoms such as pain, redness and scaling in the corner of the mouth, as well as difficulty opening the mouth and even eating.
Because it is caused by fungi or bacteria the angular cheilitis can pass to other people through kissing and using the same cup or cutlery, for example. The treatment may be done with an antibiotic or antimycotic ointment.
How to treat angular cheilitis
Treatment for cheilitis includes keeping the corner of the mouth clean and dry to prevent saliva buildup in this region. However, in most cases you need to apply healing ointments indicated by your doctor or dentist, such as Omcilon, which is rich in zinc or even Vaseline which helps to moisturize the skin.
In some cases, it may still be necessary to apply an antibiotic ointment such as Neomycin or take Fluconazole tablets to aid in the elimination of the fungus.
In addition, to help heal faster angular cheilitis it is advised to eat healing foods such as yogurt or drink orange juice with a straw because they facilitate the formation of tissue that helps close the wounds. In addition, avoid salty and acidic foods to protect the region, as well as avoiding pain and discomfort.
Angular cheilitis can become a persistent mouth injury or show periods when it is better, getting worse again, so treatment may take between 1 and 3 weeks.
What can cause angular cheilitis
Cheilitis is a common situation and the main cause is the corner of the mouth being always wet, as occurs when the baby uses pacifiers, in case of a dental prosthesis or apparatus to correct the position of the teeth. However, angular cheilitis may also occur when corticoid inhaled medication are often used, when the lips remain dry for a long time or in cases of dermatitis.
This problem is more frequent when the immune system is compromised, as in patients with AIDS or diabetes, but in some cases, cheilitis may be a sign of oral candidiasis, which must be treated. See what are the other symptoms that may indicate oral thrush.
Symptoms of angular cheilitis
The main symptoms of cheilitis include:
- Pain when opening the mouth, when you speak or eat;
- Burning sensation;
- Increased sensitivity of the corner of the mouth;
- Dry skin;
- Redness in the corner of the mouth;
- Crust in the corner of the mouth;
- Small cracks in the corner of the mouth.
This wound in the corner of the mouth causes a lot of discomfort and sensitivity increases when eating or drinking very salty, acidic or sugar rich foods.