For many people, getting the very first tattoo is a really big deal. A lot of thought has to be put into the decision, because there is more than what meets the eye, or everybody’s eyes, as a tattoo is supposed to last forever.
Previously, having a tattoo meant having links with the notorious underworld where criminals and godfathers reigned supreme. In today’s world, tattoos have gained popularity more than ever, and have a widespread acceptance.
A tattoo is a permanent design or marking made on your skin when pigments are inserted through tattoo needles. The procedure causes pain, so don’t consider it if you have a fear of needles.
Here are some pointers to consider when you think about getting that first tattoo.
Pick a tattoo that’s right for you
Don’t jump on the bandwagon and get the latest design like everyone else. Tattoo newbies should consider if the design goes with their personality, and whether it feels right. Think about whether you will still love your chosen design down the years, or whether it is a design chosen on impulse.
Things can get tricky if you decide to engrave your present infatuation’s name on your arm, only to break up a short while later! A primary school teacher or religious student would not want a skull tattoo displayed on his or her arm.
It is not a bad idea to ask for general consensus among your family and friends, especially those who have tattoos. A good friend would be honest enough to tell you the truth if the tattoo doesn’t suit you.
Find a reputable tattoo saloon
A good tattoo saloon may cost more, but it will be money worth spent. Ask for recommendations among friends with tattoos for a saloon and tattoo artist. Check out the cleanliness of the saloon, because needles will be used.
Before proceeding, ask to check out the tattoo artist’s portfolio. You may notice that a particular tattoo artist may be skilled in a certain design, e.g., floral, animal or abstract designs, so select one who can do a good job with your choice of design.
As mentioned earlier, there will be pain, so an important thing to ask is if the pain can be controlled.
Body parts not suited to be tattooed
Certain body parts are more sensitive because they have a lot of nerves or veins running through, and you should try to avoid having tattoos in the following places, e.g.:
- the top of the foot – the skin is thin and there are veins running all over.
- lower ribs – lots of thin skin here.
- fingers – lots of nerve endings here.
- kneecap – note the skin around the kneecap is very thin.
- upper and lower biceps – a lot of blood vessels running about here.
Your tattoo artist will inform you of some do’s and don’ts to follow before coming in for your tattoo, which you should follow. He should also run through the tattoo procedure with you so you know exactly what will take place, and he should give you a list of post- procedures to follow after getting your tattoo.
Health risks of getting tattoos
As tattoos leave affected skin parts exposed, some of the following complications can arise:
Skin infections – if the surroundings are not clean, you stand a very good chance of getting a skin infection.
Allergic reactions – some dyes, e.g., green, blue, red and yellow, are known to cause allergic skin reactions, and your tattoo site can feel itchy for years after.
Keloids – tattoos can lead to keloids which are raised bumps over the site. Another issue may be inflammation called granuloma, which is similar to keloids and they also form around the tattoo site.
Blood diseases – this happens when the equipment gets contaminated with infected blood from another customer, and is not sterilized properly before being used on you. You may have chances of contracting hepatitis B, hepatitis C or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
See a doctor immediately if you experience signs of infections on your tattoo site, e.g., red and swollen skin, abscess, or if you start running a fever.
What if you made a mistake with your tattoo design?
With advances in medicine today, most tattoos can be removed cosmetically. One popular option is laser surgery. However, the process is expensive, and a qualified dermatologist will have to repeat the procedures until successful results are seen. There is a high possibility of scarring which then has to be dealt with by a plastic surgeon.
We hope today’s article on getting a tattoo has been informative for our readers. The information above should in no way be taken as medical advice or as medical guidelines. Do consult your doctor for proper medical advice before going for a tattoo, especially if you are on medication for current medical issues.
14th August 19:50 2020