The Negative effects of Body Art (Tattoos)

  Imagine only having one shirt to wear for the rest of your life, it would be kind of weird wouldn’t it? Well that’s what tattoos are like, ink scarred into your flesh for the rest of your life. The word Tattoo comes from the Tahitian word “Tatu”, which is an indelible mark or design fixed upon the body by the insertion of pigment under the skin”(Clark, 2005, para. 1). These days, this is done by using a Rapid-Injection-Electrical device that punctures the dermal layer of the skin at a rapid pace, producing a design. In this essay paper I will explain the Negative effects that come with getting tattoos, such as, Health risks, Society’s view, and financial harm.

 Good health is very important. That’s why you should be very careful when deciding to get a tattoo. Visit a range of studios, make sure the studio you choose is up to basic health standards. Make sure the studio you decide to go to has an autoclave or medical sterilization machine (uses very high heat to steam the equipment), and the needles are individual packaged, sealed and dated. Unlicensed artists who complete an apprenticeship do a lot of tattoos you see these days, so be careful which studio you go to. Tattoo inks are made of dyes created from a range of metals, which are mostly toxic. The most common effects of tattoos are hypersensitivity to the red dyes (cinnabar), and photosensitivity to the yellow pigments (cadmium, which is another toxic metal). There has never been a documentation of anyone getting cancer from tattoos, but dark inks can make melanoma, skin cancer, harder to detect. Another well-known infection from tattoos is Hepatitis. In one study, tattooing accounted for 41% of Hepatitis C infections (Clark, 2005, para. 15). The only cases known about HIV are of two men who received prison tattoos. Well-known signs of an infection after getting a tattoo are high fever, puss leaking from the wound, and red streaks extending from the tattoo. “Infection that is not properly tended to can result in serious health consequences and even death”(Hudson, 2005, para. 1). 

Society frowns upon many things today in age, one of the biggest and most common being tattoos. In a recent study, completed by myself, the average person described body art as dirty, and gross. The damage tattoos can bring to someone in today’s society can be a lot worse than one would think. Many employers will not higher someone with tattoos, when they come in for an interview, and some employers will fire their staff if they find out they have tattoos. Over half of the families in Canada would not let their children get tattoos. A lot of parents kick their kids out of the house for getting body art, which leaves them, in most cases, with no where to go. Some families even disown children; I have a friend from high school in which this happened to. A large number of Restaurants and stores will not allow entrance with body art showing, must have them covered up or no entry.  

A very well noticed effect that comes along with getting tattoos is financial trouble. As we all know it, body art costs money. The average rate for a tattoo studio is $100/per hour, and when you are in getting tattooed for 3-5 hours at a time, it can become very costly. After getting the actual tattoo, you will have to take care of it until it heals, which is approximately 6-7 weeks, so now you have to purchase skin lotions to help maintain the healing process. If one is concerned about their financial statement, than one should not get a tattoo because they are highly addictive, trust me, I know from experience. Before you know it, you won’t have any spare money or money at all, and soon fall behind in bills. Coming back to health effects, if you were to receive an infection or disease from getting a tattoo, now you will have to fork out more cash to buy creams and ointments for infections or paying hospital bills for treatment of the disease. 

  In conclusion, getting a tattoo can be a big mistake. You could end up with health problems, such as getting a small innocent infection or even attracting HIV. Think hard and long before you decide it’s your time to get one. Make sure you visit many studios, and look for one that meets the health standards. Plan out where you are going to get the tattoo on your body, think about what may happen at work or at home if you get this body art inked into your skin. And don’t get addicted like I did, because it is very hard to stop!