If you're thinking about getting a tattoo, there some things you should probably consider before heading to the shop. Where you should go? Who should you use? What you should get and where? What size should your tattoo to be? You know, basic questions. You may also want to take into account some of the surprising things that happen to your body when you get a tattoo (aside from, you know the alteration of your appearance.)
Tattoos are more popular among Americans than they have been in previous years. According to a 2015 Harris Poll, 29 percent of Americans and 47 percent of Millennials have at least one tattoo. But, like piercings, tattoos can affect your health and body in a major way because they introduce unfamiliar materials to your body's precisely calibrated internal balance. If you think a tattoo might be in your future, you may want to add the ways they can impact your health to your list of things to consider, or you may just want to know what might happen to your body as a result so you're not surprised if something comes up. Either way, knowing what happens to your body when you get a tattoo is important. As the saying goes, knowledge is power.
1. You May Get An Infection
Skin infections and blood-borne diseases are both possibilities that come along with getting a tattoo, according to the Mayo Clinic. It's important to carefully assess where you're getting your tattoo, who is giving it to you, and with what instruments they'll be using to avoid the possibility.
2. You Could Have An Allergic Reaction
According to the website for the University Health Service at the University of Michigan, many of the dyes used for tattooing are made from metals, which increases their likelihood of causing an allergic reaction. If you do have a reaction to the tattoo, the only way of alleviating the irritation is by removing the parts of the tattoo causing the problem.
3. You Could Mess With An MRI
Weirdly enough, the area your tattoo is located can swell or burn when getting an MRI, according to the aforementioned Mayo Clinic article. In some cases, this is related to metals used in tattoo inks, but regardless of the reason, it's not good.
4. You Have An Adrenaline Rush
Whether you've had a tattoo before or not, your adrenaline levels will likely spike during the procedure. According to Top Health News, your body recognizes the tattooing as trauma, triggering your sympathetic nervous system's fight or flight response. You get the same rush of adrenaline as you would in other fight or flight situations.
5. You'll Develop Scar Tissue
Your body can develop scar tissue, keloids, or granulomas after getting a tattoo, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. If you're prone to keloids or granulomas, you're especially susceptible to developing these post-tattoo.
6. Your Immune System Might React
It's possible that your body could seriously react to the presence of foreign material, which is what tattoo ink is. "Injecting a foreign material under the skin can elicit an immune reaction that sets of an autoimmune condition in some patients," Chris Thiagarajah, an oculoplastic surgeon, tells Romper by email. "There have been reported cases of patients getting a tattoo and then developing an immune system problem or disease." You can't definitively predict the way that your immune system will respond to something.
7. Your Skin Might Scab
Tiny needles pricking your skin over and over again and depositing ink between the layers of tissue can, perhaps unsurprisingly, cause you to bleed a little bit. According to the previously-mentioned article from Top Health News, within a couple of days after getting your tattoo, you might notice that you're developing scabs. They might be unsightly, but they're signs that the healing process is going well, so don't worry.