When I first heard about lip balm addiction, I thought it was a joke. How could anything such as a waxy substance infused with mint or eucalyptus be addictive? As it turns out, it's really not a laughing matter at all. |
Lip balm, even most medicated lip balm, has no addictive substances. That doesn't mean the average consumer can't get hooked on using it. Basically, it's the act of applying lip balm frequently throughout the day that causes the problem.
It's not really and addiction, it's actually obsessive compulsive behaviour. Whether it's an oral fixation of applying the balm, or the need to have the lips constantly moistened, some people continue to use the product even when their lips are healthy and nourished.
Anything in extreme is not good for you, and that includes lip balm. However, you can fight your need to constantly seal your lips with a couple simple steps.
Stick to balms that have no flavour. This will prevent you from licking your lips, which can actually lead to chapping. Also, some people are attracted to the scent and flavours of the balm itself, so taking that out of the equation should make it easier for you to keep the lid on.
Drink plenty of fluids to help keep yourself well hydrated. This will reduce the need for lip balm altogether. However, if you do notice your lips are dry and damaged, only then should you apply a balm.
If you have no need for lip balm, but you can't rid yourself of the urge to reapply, switch to something else. Try lip gloss or lipstick, which actually should be reapplied during the day. Again, it's not the lip balm that's addicting, it's the compulsive act of applying it. So switching products won't really quell your urges, but at least it will appear logical.
Compulsive habits are certainly not new. Some people bite their fingernails. Others constantly twirl their hair. Still some tap their fingers or feet. If you can't seem to kick the lip balm habit, take comfort in the fact that at least you're strange addiction isn't a nuisance to anyone other than yourself.
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