Just a few decades ago, tattoos were rare - largely found only on people like bikers, or ex-cons who were trying to send the message "I'm a badass". Today, nearly one in three Americans has at least one tattoo. But is getting a tattoo really as chique as some people think?
The Importance of Healthy Skin
The skin is the body's largest organ. It acts as a protective layer between your insides and the outside world. It protects your body from harmful things such as germs and toxic substances, and plays an important role in regulating your body temperature. Skin that is healthy is able to resist signs of aging. Listed below are some of the health risks of injecting ink into the skin.
1. Infections from tattooing are nothing new, but the connection between hepatitis C and tattooing is more widespread than many people are aware of. The Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is the leading cause of liver cancer in the U.S. and is responsible for chronic liver disease in 70 percent of people infected with it. According to a study published in the Journal of Hepatology, people with hepatitis C were almost four times more likely to report having a tattoo.
While tainted needles and unsanitary conditions are often to blame for hepatitis C infections, people can get infections even in the most sterile of conditions. In 2014, one ink company recalled its product after testing confirmed bacteria in unopened bottles of ink.
2. Having tattoos changes the way sweat glands operate. Maybe you are familiar with the Chief Medical Examiner Jan Carla Garavaglia, better known as "Dr. G". One of her shows highlighted a body that was brought to her for examination. It was a construction worker who, one hot day in Osceola county, Florida keeled over and died on the job. What Dr. G found was that the man's body was covered with tattoo's, preventing him from being able to sweat enough to cool his body.
3. A person may be allergic to pigments in tattoo ink. Sometimes the allergic reactions occur soon after getting the tattoo. But often they can appear or persist for months and even years after the tattoo was received. These symptoms include respiratory problems like shortness of breath and cough, chest tightness, itchy, red rashes (not necessarily at the location of the tattoo), lack of energy, irritability, and inability to sleep.
4. The skin is permeable, that's how things like nicotine patches work. Studies have shown that tattoo inks move into people's lymph nodes. Lymph nodes are one of the body's ways of filtering out organisms that cause disease. Do you really want to be poisoning an organ that helps to keep the body free of disease?
Getting Tired of a Piece of Art
5. Tattoo regret is one of the most common feelings of disappointment. Maybe the message that you were trying to send when you got the tattoo is no longer true. Maybe the male athlete you honored turned out to be female. Maybe the politician you rooted for turned out be a liar. Maybe the cause you supported turned out not to be what it was cracked up to be. Maybe that loving mate that you celebrated with a tattoo - cheated on you.
Then there's the picture on the wall syndrome. Many people like to mount a beautiful picture on the wall of their home or apartment. They admire it for a few months, or even years. But eventually they get tired of looking at it and decide to replace it with something new. What about that tattoo? Tired of looking at it? Not so easy to get rid of a tattoo.
6. I googled "remove tattoo" and received 303,000,000 results. That's right 303 MILLION results! Removing a tattoo can be painful and expensive. The preferred way to remove them is Laser treatment, but dermabrasion and surgical removal are also options. The pain in removing a tattoo is about the same as the pain in getting the tattoo in the first place.
Most people need between 6 to 8 sessions to completely remove a tattoo. The number of treatments needed depends on the tattoo size, colors used, and skin type. Sessions are spaced 6 to 8 weeks apart to allow the skin to heal. The average tattoo removal cost is between $300 to $500 per session.
The Social Aspects of Tattoos
7. Tattoo getters think that displaying a tattoo will make other people think you're cool, or that you're macho. In reality, most INTELLIGENT people will view you as being a poor decision maker or an individual that is not too bright. If you were really macho, you wouldn't need a tattoo to show it. If you were really smart, you would already know the information in this article. And, lets be clear, tattoos are not feminine. If you are a female you are quite beautiful, and a tattoo is only going to block and dilute that beauty.
8. In most fields of work, your job prospects are much lower if you're displaying a tattoo. Most businesses want their employees to be viewed as conservative and intelligent, therefore not likely to do any crazy or unexpected things in the performance of their business. An individual that disregards their own skin health and obviously makes poor decisions is not someone they want to represent their business.
9. Many people get tattoos because they see them on celebrities. You should understand that entertainers are not any smarter or better than the rest of us. Being an actor, singer, musician, or other type of entertainer is just a job. A celebrity may or may not have more talent in their field of entertainment than the average person. Even if they do, I assure you that you have just as much talent as the most famous celebrity, everybody does. Your area of talent or skill is just not in an area that gets so much publicity. Have some self esteem, don't worship celebrities. And I really hope you have enough self esteem to not be influenced by a friend with tattoos who you mistakenly think is cool.
For those in the tattoo business who think this article may cause them to lose their job or their business, not to worry, my writing is just not that popular. This article will probably have no effect what so ever. And if you really are the talented tattoo artist that you claim to be, even if you did lose all your business, a talented person like you can easily find many other ways to earn a good living with your artistic talents.