Adult Health Mom Health Skin

6 Reasons Tattoos Are Unhealthy

Tattoos can be absolutely awesome, but only if they’re done right! They can be very hot, but you know they’re ridiculous if they’re done wrong. But did you know that tattoos aren’t always good for you? In fact, you may find that they can be downright hazardous to your health.

Here are a few reasons you may want to avoid getting a tattoo:

  1. Infections — Your skin will naturally swell up after the needle pierces your skin for the tattoo, but that piercing means that the little holes in your skin are exposed to the air around you. There is a very high risk of infection if you don’t take care of your skin after getting a tattoo, and even those who do apply the proper ointment and dressings can still get an infection.
  2. Allergic reactions –– You have no idea what’s in the ink used for your tattoo, much less how your body will react to it. If you have sensitive skin or something in the ink causes your body to react negatively, you may find that your skin breaks out in a rash around the site of the tattoo. It can happen even years after the tattoo is done.
  3. Granulomas –– Granulomas are little bumps of skin that tend to form around tattoos, as the skin cells mix with the pigment cells of the tattoo and clump together. They can be colorful-looking moles and can cause problems in your later years.
  4. Keloids –– These are similar to granulomas, and they are caused by an overgrowth of scar tissue as your skin heals from the tattoo. These raised areas can be unsightly, and they may increase your risk of melanoma (skin cancer) as you age.
  5. MRI Problems — When you go in for an MRI, the machine uses magnetism to take images of your body. This magnetism may cause the tattoo to swell up or burn, or the tattoo can interfere with the quality of the image taken. If there is any metal in the ink, you may even find that your tattoo fades with every MRI taken.
  6. Diseases –– As with everything where a needle pierces your skin, there is always the risk that you will contract bloodborne diseases thanks to your tattoos. If the needles are not clean or they have been used before, you may contract a number of contagious diseases such as Hepatitis B and C or tetanus.

 What’s in the Ink?

One thing to keep in mind is that there’s no way to know what’s in the ink that is being used for your tattoo. There is no need for tattoo artists to tell you what materials and pigments are used in the ink, so you will have no way of knowing what you are exposing your body to.

You may find that the ink itself can be harmless, but the carrier solution used to inject the ink into your body can contain substances like antifreeze, toxic aldehydes like formaldehyde, detergents, denatured alcohol, rubbing alcohol, and even methanol. Seeing as there is no list of ingredients on the bottle, you can’t be 100% certain that the tattoo is going to be safe.

For this reason, it’s important that you think carefully BEFORE you get a tattoo. Make sure that it’s worth marking your body permanently for the rest of your life. Also, make sure you find a tattoo parlor that is clean, professional, and which places the health and safety of its customers at a premium. If you’re not careful, you could end up suffering from a serious, lifelong health problem!

About the author


Some people get lucky and are born with fit, toned bodies. Andy Peloquin is not one of those people... Fitness has come hard for him, and he's had to work for it. His trials have led him to becoming a martial artist, an NFPT-certified fitness trainer, and a man passionate about exercise, diet and healthy living. He loves to exercise--he does so six days a week--and loves to share his passion for fitness and health with others.

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