Tattoos are an expression of your choice. Teens Health, an informative site for children and parents alike, says regarding tattoos, “A tattoo is a permanent kind of body art — a design.” But, a grave error would be forgetting to tend to your body art, especially immediately post-procedure.
Yes, your tattoo is brilliant, beautiful, and a work of art that will last you a lifetime. And, we know all you want to do is show it off and stare at it all day. But, you should be careful touching your bandages for the first few weeks.
Your skin recently underwent a pretty traumatic event. Being punctured repeatedly, hundreds of times is no simple feat. Thus, the bandage on your tattoo isn’t meant to obscure your majestic creation. Instead, it’s there to protect your skin from infections as it heals.
Cleaning The Art
Conversely, not properly washing the area and not changing the bandages as needed can create a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. Balance in this case, as with any other medical or cosmetic procedure is required. Using a mild antibacterial soap, gently cleanse the area around the tattoo. Use a soft cloth to lightly pat dry and apply an antibacterial cream to the skin.
However, even then, some side effects are common so, don’t be overly alarmed. These can be treated with a measure of caution and can be overlooked, within reason. Usually mild and temporary, such effects can include redness, mild burning, pus, and swelling. If these worsen or if you develop any new side effects not listed by your tattoo artist, seek immediate medical care, as serious health issues can occur.
Hydrate Your Skin
If we’ve said it once, we’ll say it a thousand times more: Hydrate your skin! Not only is dry skin patchy, scaly, and itchy, but it opens the door for infections. Still, if your tattooed skin is peeling, don’t freak out. “The top layer of skin, which received most of the blunt trauma during the process, has died and is flaking off. Beneath it, you will see fresh skin and your tattoo will appear less-hazy and brighter,” says Tatoo Care, a site sponsored by Saniderm.
Even so, a layer peeling off is no excuse to disregard hydration! “Letting the tattoo dry out can cause it to enter the peeling phase much faster, however. That’s where we defer to the first point: Be Watchful. “[Drying out] isn’t a good thing. Be sure to follow your artist’s instructions closely to avoid the tattoo drying out and peeling prematurely.”
Should You Suspect Infection
If you notice any unnerving or disconcerting symptoms that are especially unordinary, see a doctor. If these symptoms continue for more than a few days, seek immediate medical care. Failure to treat “a tattoo infection quickly can put you at great risk for abscesses and other nasty complications. Aside from its health risks, leaving a tattoo infection untreated can damage the artwork you have on your body and may require you having to get it redone or touched up.”
Not Loving Your Art Anymore
If for whatever reason you don’t love your tattoo anymore, you have options. Some people choose to re-do their creation, turning it into another name or a different scene. Others choose to conceal it, using makeup to hide it on a regular basis or laser tattoo removal for a permanent fix. What you choose to do depends greatly on your budget, circumstances in life, and pain tolerance.
If you want more information, however, on removing your tattoo via lasers, speak with a doctor or aesthetician. They will explain how the procedure works and will also be able to provide suggestions on caring for your skin.
The information provided herein has been reviewed for accuracy, but cannot be guaranteed to be free of infallalacy. The information herein does not qualify as a diagnosis nor does it substitute a consultation with a licensed physician.
© 2017, 2020 ALLIED MEDICAL AND DIAGNOSTIC SERVICES LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.