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Steps for Tattoo Safety

Posted On: 07-14-2017
Steps for Tattoo Safety
Tattoos are very common—in fact, one in five adults in the United States has one. If you are considering a tattoo, it is necessary to put thought into the safety of the service—from the parlor you select to the aftercare steps, there are ways to minimize your risk of infection or poor healing.

Regulations

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates the inks that are used in tattoos, but the actual practice of tattooing is regulated locally—there is no overall governing body for tattooing. With the FDA, the ink needs to fall under cosmetic regulations only, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is pushing for higher safety regulations.

Risks

There is always a risk of infection whenever something is injected into your skin. Tattooing brings along risks of infections such as staph, warts, and hepatitis. There is also a risk of blood borne illnesses, and pain is typical (although it can vary in severity).

Additionally, some individuals experience an allergic reaction to the ink ingredients, which can lead to scarring and inflammation.

Recommendations

Before getting a tattoo, make sure that the tattoo parlor you plan to go to is clean. The tools there should be new and sterilized, and ink should be in small containers for single use. The tattoo artist should always wear gloves.

Completely removing tattoos later is a challenge, so be positive about your choice before the service is performed.

Follow your tattoo artist’s suggestions for caring for the tattoo afterward. This will involve keeping the tattoo covered, like any other wound, with a sterile bandage.

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