Tattoos and infection

Symptoms of Tattoos Infection:

Tattoos have become a rage the world over with all kinds of celebrities be it Hollywood or sports icons wearing them on their bodies. Tattoos, which date back to pre-historic times, can range from floral designs & tribal designs to an animal, sunshine or the name of your loved ones.
Tattoos have become a style statement for the younger lot and some even sporting two to three tattoos on their bodies. Though the craze and demand for tattoos has increased, the risk involved with tattoos, particularly infection, has also increased.

Tattoos and Infection

Symptoms of Tattoo Infections:

If you get inflammation, swelling, pus or bloody discharge in the area where you got tattoo engraved, it means that you have got infection. The skin near the tattooed area might also become tender. Also, if you get fever and are feeling the pain in the area even 48 hours after the tattoo procedure, it means that you have to go to doctor for his advice.

In most types of infections, an antibiotic and following aftercare procedures is enough to treat the infection. However, if the infection is not treated properly at right time, it may lead to blood poisoning.

Types of tattoo Infections:

Engraving tattoos on your body could lead to skin infections, Hepatitis C and HIV.

  1. Skin Infections: The most common form of infection which a person can get after getting tattoo on the body is skin infection. Using equipment which is unsterilized in an environment which is not sterile could lead to skin infection. If the tattoo artist does not maintain personal hygiene and does not follow the after-care instructions, it could lead to skin infections.
  2. Fungal infections, cellulitis, tetanus, impetigo, herpes simplex, leprosy and staph are also some of the common skin infections which can be caused after the tattoo is made.
  3. Hepatitis C: many doctors are of the view that those sporting tattoos are more susceptible to hepatitis C infection, a blood disease which affects the functioning of liver. The Hepatitis C infection could be passed on from one person to another through the needles and inks which are reused for the clients.

A study, which appeared in the Journal of American medicine, opined that the people who had large tattoos engraved on the body or who had tattoos in red, yellow, orange and white inks were more likely to get Hepatitis C infection.

At present, Hepatitis C cannot be cured and can prove fatal for the victim.

  1. HIV infections: HIV infections, which can lead to AIDS, can be caused due to use of tools which are either unsterilized or improperly sterilized. It can also be transferred if the HIV-infected tattoo artist pricks his hand accidently while engraving the tattoo.

Precautionary Measures to Prevent Tattoo Infections:

It is advisable to take some important precautions while going for tattoos. Some of them are mentioned below:

  1. It is important that you do research before hand on different tattoo parlors and are familiar with the procedures used to sterilize the equipment so that no one can fool you.
  2. You must ensure that the tattoo parlor or studio where you are getting the tattoo done is a clean and sterile one. You should also make sure that it has sinks with hot water and soap.
  3. You must also ensure that tattoo artists maintain full personal hygiene and wear latex gloves.
  4. You must ensure that proper procedures are followed for sterilizing the equipments used to engrave tattoos.
  5. You must ensure that the tattoo artists use a separate disposable sterile needle for every client. They should also put the small quantity of fresh ink in the disposable containers which could be used for a single client.
  6. You should strictly follow the after-care precautions to negate any risk of getting infections.

Tattoo is a great way to make a style statement but you must make sure that you take certain precautions to ensure that you do not get infections as it may not only ruin your tattoo but may also affect your health.

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