Angular cheilitis (key-LITE-iss) is that pesky, painful cracking and soreness that develops at the corners of the mouth in some small children, usually related to slobbering and pacifier use. It is caused by yeast (Candida) infection, and responds to topical nystatin. You can dab the oral suspension on the sores about four times a day.

Cheilitis generally is dryness and often an uncomfortable sensation of the lips with scaling and cracking and accompanied by a characteristic burning sensation, that is common in children. It is thought to be caused by sensitivity to contact substances (from mouthing toys and certain foods) combined with photosensitivity to the sun's rays. It is aggravated by the alternation of wetting with the tongue and drying by the wind, especially in cold weather. Cheilitis often occurs in children who have had high fevers. Frequent application of petroleum jelly ("your first aid kit in a jar") promotes healing and is also useful to prevent the condition in the first place.

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