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While rummaging through a household drawer looking for something to heal your chapped lips, you might run across a tube of A and D ointment. All A and D ointments contain the same active ingredients and are mainly marketed for treating diaper rash. The ointments work for many other skin conditions, however, including chapped lips.
Chapped lips are common in dry weather. You might develop chapped lips if you live in an arid climate or during the winter. Not only is winter air dry, heat sources such as furnaces and wood stoves dry out the air inside buildings as well. Being out in the wind also is rough on your lips. Fortunately, oil-based and petrolatum-based products can relieve your chapped lips and protect them against dryness.
You can buy A and D ointments in various brands, including the traditional A+D Ointment from Merck/Schering-Plough. Numerous store brands are available as well. A and D ointments contain petrolatum and lanolin as the active ingredients. These ingredients moisturize your lips and provide a protective coating. A and D ointments also contain cod liver oil, which provides vitamins A and D, along with other oils and waxes.
While it might seem a little weird to use a diaper rash ointment as a treatment for chapped lips, the healing principle is the same. A and D ointments are designed to soothe and relieve irritated skin. MayoClinic.com specifically recommends using a lip balm containing petrolatum to protect against chapped lips. Keep in mind that the smell and flavor of the cod liver oil in A and D ointments might not be all that pleasant, however. A and D ointments also are helpful for dry skin and eczema, and for minor cuts, scrapes and burns.
In addition to protecting your lips with A and D ointment or a different product, stop chapped lips in the future with additional techniques. Drink plenty of water and other fluids to keep your skin hydrated and prevent dryness. Breathe through your nose instead of through your mouth. Don't lick your lips in an effort to moisturize them, because that actually makes the problem worse.