Dark Spot on Lip

Dark spot on lip may occur as a symptom of mild causes like increased intake of caffeine or severe causes like cancer.

Causes of dark spot on lip

Listed below are some common causes of dark spot on lip:

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  • Diet
    • Eating just cooked hot foods can burn the lips; the risk increases when hot and spicy foods are consumed. Chronic lip burns can result in dark spot on lip.
    • Increased consumption of coffee, tea, or caffeinated beverages can darken the lips. Drinking piping hot coffee or other drinks can cause lips burns and dark spots.
  • Nutrition
    • Deficiency of vitamin B can cause varied health problems, like angular cheilitis which causes cracks and inflammation of skin around the lips. Angular cheilitis also creates right conditions for fungal infections which can then cause dark spot on lip. Intake of vitamin B abundant foods and supplements can help overcome this nutritional deficiency.
    • Dark spot on lip may also occur if iron levels in the body are above normal
  • Habits
    • Nicotine present in cigarettes/tobacco products is a toxin that increases the risk to dry skin and cancer, etc. Smoking can also cause excessively dry, discolored, dark stains or spots on lips.
    • Increased consumption of alcohol can also cause lip discoloration, darkened spotting, and dryness
    • Many individuals lick the lips to overcome the dryness of lips. However, licking lips does not moisturize them; instead it causes them to become drier. Chronic licking of lips can trigger dark spot on lip. Persistent biting the lips can injure lips and cause dark spots.
    • Lip skin is prone to easy damage as it is very delicate. Using inferior quality or expired lip cosmetics can damage the skin and trigger dark spots to form on lips. The skin can also get damaged if lipstick and other lip care products are not removed before sleeping.
  • Health problems and diseases
    • Hormonal problems like thyroid disorders can affect a variety of body systems and functions like metabolism, sexual health, mood, skin, etc. Hormonal imbalance can cause the lips to become dry and develop dark spots.
    • Melanin is a skin pigment that gets produced via sun exposure. Increased exposure to sunlight for prolonged periods can increase melanin production, cause sunburns, and darken the skin, even lip skin. Eventually dark spots on lip may form. Using sunscreen, hats, and other sun-protection measures as well as avoiding frequent outdoor excursions can help prevent pigmentation and other skin problems.
    • Dark spot on lip may also occur due to allergic reactions to face care cosmetics, toothpaste, etc.
    • In some cases, dark spot on lip may indicate a case of lip cancer or other kinds of skin or oral cancer.
    • Dehydration can cause the lips to become dry. Increased instances of dehydration marked by dry lips and skin can increase the risk to development of dark spot on lip.
  • Other causes
    • In rare cases, dental fixtures may cause different lip issues, including dark spots on lips. Lip discoloration may be treated with laser surgery or the fixtures may need to be removed.
    • Cold climates can cause the lips to become very dry and/or chap, thereby increasing susceptibility to infections and discoloration of lip skin.
    • Dark spot on lip can also occur as a side effect of medications like amiodarone, phenothiazines, and phenytoin, etc.

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Treatment of dark spot on lip

Treatment of dark spot on lip is done as per the causative factors or underlying conditions, via medications, home remedies, and self-care as mentioned below:

  • Chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation therapy is used for treating cancer
  • Drink adequate water and other fluids to keep the body hydrated and prevent dry skin
  • Good quality chapsticks or lip balm may be used to alleviate dry lips, lip discoloration, etc. They also help ensure that lips remain soft.
  • Using superior lip care products and cosmetics can help treat and prevent varied lip skin problems
  • Do not eat foods that are very hot; limit intake of spicy foods, coffee, tea, alcohol, and caffeinated beverages
  • Intake of balanced diet with all vital vitamins and nutrients, exercising, quitting smoking, and other lifestyle changes can help maintain overall health and prevent dark spot on lip
  • Apply purified butter or petroleum jelly to moisturize the lips. Gently brush the lip skin with a toothbrush in circular motions so as to exfoliate the skin. Wash lips, apply honey, and then wipe it off after 10-15 minutes.
  • Lemon juice, lemon juice with honey, and apple cider vinegar are bleaching agents. Apply any of them on lips, every day, till the dark spots on lips fade away and the lips become rosier and glowing.
  • Smokers can apply beetroot juice on darkened pigmented skin to get rid of lip spots. Alternatively, paste of glycerin and rose petals may also be used.
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