Bump on Lip: Check Out the Causes and Its Treatment

There’s a bump on your lip and you’re freaking out. Wondering if you should ignore it or takes it seriously?

Lip bumps usually don’t scream danger, but sometimes they could indicate a potentially life-threatening condition. This is why it’s important to know the possible causes and treatments. 

In this article, we’re going to share detailed information about why lip bumps occur and how you can get rid of them.

What Causes Bumps On Lips?

Lip bumps could mean an allergic reaction or oral cancer. They can vary in size and appearance and may require prompt attention. The possible causes include:

An Allergic Reaction

bump on lip

Source: medicalnewstoday.com

A lip bump could indicate an allergic reaction to certain food items like nuts, shellfish, or fruits. It could also be because of animal dander, pollen, or dust mites. When these allergens enter the body, your immune system recognizes them as foreign and initiates an attack, causing your lips to appear swollen and bumpy.

A Cold Sore

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Cold sores are tiny fluid-filled blisters that appear on the lips. The highly contagious Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) causes these bumps to develop. They initially start as a tingling and burning sensation around your mouth and eventually pop up as a red bump on lip. 

Mucous Cysts

bump on lip

Source: medicalnewstoday.com

Mucoceles are most commonly found as a swollen bump on the lower lip and inner part of the cheek, as these are the most commonly injured parts of the mouth, although they can appear anywhere inside the mouth.

It is a single lump that is soft and painless and has a faint blue or normal skin tone. It can range in size from 1/2 to 1 inch. It might emerge out of nowhere, whereas a mucus-retention cyst can grow slowly. These normally appear as a clear bump inside lip.


bump on lip

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If you notice a white bump on lip, it could most likely be a milium (plural milia). 

Milia are tiny white cysts that can develop on the skin surface. They commonly appear in infants but can also form in adults. They develop on the face, typically on the nose, chin, or cheeks, but can also appear along your lip’s border.

Milia are caused by dead skin cells that get trapped inside tiny pockets on the skin surface.

They are painless, harmless, and do not require medical attention. They usually go away on their own within a month or two.

Oral Cancer

small bumps on lips

Source: thenewslens.com

Small bumps on lips can rarely be a symptom of oral cancer. When tiny blisters or sores on your lips don’t heal with time, it can be a matter of concern. These sores can extend to the interior of the mouth, the gums, the tongue, and the jaw. They may also appear as red bumps on your lips.

Other Reasons

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Those annoying little bumps could also be pimples on your lips. Lip pimples generally appear when your pores become blocked with dirt, oil, or makeup.

How Can You Diagnose Bumps On Your Lips?

small bumps on lips

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Here are some common ways in which bumps on lips are diagnosed.

Physical Examination

The most common way of diagnosing lip bumps is a physical examination of your lips. Your doctor will thoroughly examine your lips, teeth, gums, and the interior of your mouth.

Risk Factors

The doctor will also inquire about the risk factors for lip bumps, such as smoking, sun exposure, new medicines, or allergies.

Medical Tests

The doctor may also run a few tests like blood tests or carry out a biopsy (removal of skin cells in the affected area for analysis).

They may also ask you a series of questions about your lip sores, such as:

  1. How long have you had the bump on lip?
  2. Have you ever experienced comparable lip sores?
  3. Do you have any additional symptoms in addition to your lip sores?
  4. Have you had any minor injuries to your lips, such as biting or burning them?
  5. Do you have any medical issues that you have to deal with regularly?

How To Get Rid of a Bump On Lip?

In most cases, you don’t need any medical treatment to get rid of those small bumps on your lips. You only need to be mindful of a few things to avoid complicating the problem. 

However, in rare cases, you might want to visit a doctor to treat the lip bumps.

General Remedies For Lip Bumps

small bumps on lips

Source: getkidster.com

  • Apply an ice pack to the swollen bump on lip. You can also use a cool, moist cloth for 5–10 minutes many times a day to reduce the cooling.
  • Watch what you eat. Avoid eating hot, acidic, salty, and spicy meals and beverages. These might aggravate the lip sore and make it seem like it’s burning.
  • Apply petroleum jelly to the small bumps on your lips and the surrounding region to prevent them from drying out and cracking.
  • Use OTC drugs if you have a cold sore. They may shorten the duration of the cold sore. Over-the-counter pain relievers: Acetaminophen (Tylenol) and ibuprofen are two examples (Advil). 

Topical benzocaine, dibucaine, lidocaine, or benzyl alcohol gels or ointments can also help relieve pain. Benzyl alcohol reduces inflammation and kills bacteria that may cause an infection on your lips. 

  • In adults, milia may go away on their own, but your doctor may prescribe topical creams like tretinoin and tazarotene.

Also Read: Is It Normal To Have Bumps On Back Of Tongue? Know It Here

Medical Treatments For Bumps On Your Lips

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  • If mucoceles keep recurring, you can go for surgical excision, freezing (cryosurgery), or laser ablation. 
  • Your doctor may do an endoscopy, which involves passing a tiny, flexible camera with a light down your throat to check for symptoms of cancer spreading beyond your mouth.
  • Imaging tests are performed. Several imaging techniques assess if cancer has spread beyond your mouth. X-rays, CT scans, MRI scans, and positron emission tomography (PET) scans are examples of imaging tests. Each test isn’t for everyone. Based on your situation, your doctor will choose which tests are necessary.

How To Prevent Bump On Lip?

small bumps on lips

Source: lifesavvy.com

  • Sharing lip balm, lipstick, toothbrush, razor, face towels, or drinks is never a good idea. Particularly if what you have is a cold sore or you suspect it is coming. And, as tempting as it may be, resist the urge to touch them. 
  • Do not pop any lip bumps as it may complicate the problem.
  • Be sure to take off lipstick before going to bed.


A bump on your lips might be concerning, but knowing the causes of lip bumps will enable you to take the appropriate actions to eliminate them. 

If a pimple on lip does not go away with over-the-counter therapy or if the person has several or recurring lip pimples, it may be worth contacting a dermatologist.

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