Patches of dry skin on a person's lip usually means the lips are chapped, according to the National Institute of Health ; however, it may also be a symptom of Sjogren's Syndrome. To get a definitive diagnosis, it is best to visit a physician.
Chapped lips are the most common reason for dry skin on the lips. Chapped lips are caused by over exposure to the elements, such as wind or sun. This condition can also be caused by excessive licking of the lips, usually in an effort to keep them moist. The National Center for Biotechnology Information, or NCBI states there are some ways a person can combat the effects of chapped lips.
- Use a type of lip balm when going out into cold, dry weather.
- Use sunscreen made especially for the lips if one is going to be out in the sun for an extended period of time.
- Increase the humidity in the air at home.
- Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
Dry skin on the lips may also be a sign of Sjogren's Syndrome. According to the NCBI, this syndrome is characterized by dry eyes and mouth, but dry skin and skin rashes are other symptoms. This syndrome usually affects women age of 40 and older, and it is treated with a variety of different medications.