calmvoice, i hope the bariderm helps you. it probably will help you at least a little, i do believe that!
i would urge everyone to try to figure out what the reason for the lip exfoliation/irritation is, and not just to try to suppress the exfoliation with topical treatments.
you've probably already tried to figure the underlying cause out, of course.
some possible causes:
-compulsive lip biting or licking
-localized or systemic infection by fungus, bacteria, virus
-poor dental/mouth hygiene
-imbalance of vitamins or minerals
-other systemic physical disease/deficiency
on top of getting medical tests for thyroid trouble, vitamin imbalance, fungus, yeast, bacteria, allergies --
it might be worthwhile to systematically, on your own, to avoid every allergen that might possibly be causing your skin to have a reaction against it. even crazy things like wool clothing, dairy foods, the nickel in coins, olive oil... all of these and many more can cause skin and lip rashes.
i personally have a history of having allergies, so that's why i launched into seeing if i was having an allergic reaction to anything i ate, used, touched, etc. a couple of months ago when i figured out that i have cheilitis and not just momentarily-chapped lips. eliminating potential allergens can be an annoying and time-consuming process. but i finally found my answer(s) - i ended up discovering that i was having a bad reaction to a couple of things that i have been using with no problems for many years, but which this year suddenly made my lips really go crazy with exfoliation/irritation. I've avoided these things entirely for a few weeks now, and my lips are slowly getting back to normal. So many layers of my lips were initially damaged, that I can see each new layer growing up, exfoliating off, and then the next layer of skin has a smaller scabby area, and it continues to improve each day. I would never have guessed that, given how fast my lip skin was growing and turning over when it was so inflamed by the irritants, how slowly my lip skin would heal when it was finally not being goaded by anything to run riot. It just takes time; time, patience, kindness, and creativity.
I do think that eventually, your lips will get back to normal.
Not all doctors are terrible, selfish, money-hungry. Yes, some are - one summer, I dated something of a "GP doctor to celebrities" guy who was actually shockingly uncaring and psychopathic, which I only found out after I knew his personality well. But a lot of doctors are good, smart, decent people. One problem is the health system in the US, which is really screwed up. It's in such a mess that it forces even well-intentioned people to act harshly. In any event, use a doctor like you'd use a car mechanic or a tv salesperson -- get advice, go to several, compare prices and 'philosophies', realize you are always the captain of your own ship, and take control of your health.