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Mentholatum Relieved Cracked Lips

Mentholatum Relieved Cracked Lips

Q. I had red wet cracks at the corners of my mouth. I began using Mentholatum on my lips every night. That cleared it right up with no recurrence!

A. Laboratory research has shown that camphor and menthol, the active ingredients in Mentholatum, have anti-fungal activity (Phytotherapy Research, April 2003). That may explain why Mentholatum worked against angular cheilitis (cracks at the corners of the mouth). This can be caused by a fungal infection.

Vicks VapoRub has similar ingredients and might work in a similar manner. With either product, take care not to ingest the ointment. They are intended for external use.

You can read more about angular cheilitis here.

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies. .
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