Tattoos; Not Just for Drunken Sailors


    Tattoos are not new. They have been around longer then recorded history. It just seems I have been noticing them a lot more lately. I don't know if that was because I started to take an interest or there are a lot more people getting them.

    Before I decided to get my tattoo, I did some home work. I don't come from a background of drunken sailors, so my only thoughts were those dark and dingy, back alley shops you see on late night TV. As most of you reading this can guess, I was wrong. There are clean and reputable tattoo shops even in my town. Some of these tattoo shop are even open during the day light.

    I did a lot of internet searching and have learned a lot about tattoos and tattoo shops. Mostly I learned not to prejudge. But some of the things I learned I thought would be worth passing on to my kids and to whoever is deciding to get a tattoo.

    Tattoos can put you at risk for contacting many diseases, such as HIV, Hepatitis and even tuberculosis. Tattoos can bring on skin infections such as impetigo, dermatitis and possibly an allergic reaction to the tattoo pigment. To minimize the risk you really need to follow a couple of common sense rules when seeking out a tattoo shop.

    Stop by a tattoo shop and look and see if they are using single service equipment. Make sure all needles and tubes are individually packaged, dated, sealed. The person who tattoos should use guidelines created by OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration for the handling of body fluids. And of course, the person doing the tattoo should be wearing gloves.

    After you get your tattoo, don't pick or tug on the area of the tattoo. Clean with soap and water not with alcohol. Tattoos are sensitive to sun; use SPF 30 or greater to protect them. Also, use antibiotic cream for several days. The body considers tattoos as an open wound.

    I hope anybody considering a tattoo or who has a tattoo and is getting another will just take a few precautions.

    Remember friends don't let friend's get a tattoo while under the influence of alcohol or after just meeting Mr. or Ms. Right.


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