The wearing of tattoos has been in existence since time immemorial. From discoveries made, tattooing was used as a form of treatment, resembling modern acupuncture. Tattoos are markings of indelible ink inserted into the dermis of the skin, changing skin pigmentation around the area. Although abhorred in some cultures and considered unreligious by some religions, tattoo practice is and continues to spread throughout the world.
You may consider receiving tattoos for various reasons:
- As a body decoration – You may receive tattoo treatment on parts of your body that are always bare as a decoration. Because this is done cosmetically, you can also wear a tattoo on part of your skin with skin defects to cover such defects. You can also receive permanent cosmetic tattoo on your eyebrows and lips to enhance your look. This way, your eyebrows and lips will seem to have a permanent liner and lipstick treatment.
- Identification – You can receive a particular form of tattoo treatment to serve as an identification mark. Identification through tattoo treatments was in fact popular in Nazi concentration camps.
- Medical tattoos – Medical tattoos are used in the medical field to ensure that treatment instruments are properly located. This is in most cases in repeat treatments as in radiotherapy treatments.
While medical tattoos are created by professional, general body tattooing service is now offered by varied tattoo artists commercially. They use highly specialized equipments to inject indelible ink into your skin dermis, the tissue below your skin epidermis. As the ink settles in the dermis, it spreads homogeneously while ‘damaging’ the upper epidermis layer. Because foreign matter is introduced into your body, your immune system is activated and releases phagocytes that surround the indelible ink particles. As the epidermis heals from the initial ‘damage’, it flakes away, leaving the inner dermal tissue to form ink granules. As the epidermis heals, the pigmented tissue forms a layer below the healing epidermis, resulting in permanent skin pigmentation.
A tattooing artist will use a tattooing machine, electric in this case in creating your tattoo. The machine can feature a single or multiple tiny needles soldered onto a bar, which is attached to an oscillating unit. The unit oscillates at a very high speed, driving the needle(s) in and out of your skin injecting the indelible ink into your skin in the process.
While skin dyes used in earlier times were limited because they were obtained directly from natural plants, modern inks vary greatly. You therefore have a wide selection of dyes that produce different skin pigmentation. Tattoo artists also form their own unique skin pigment formulations by mixing varied amounts of pigments. The most commonly used dyes include titanium dioxide, iron oxides and naphthol derivates. These are carbon based.
Although you may receive tattoo treatment, it is only important that you keep some points in mind:
- You may decide to receive either permanent or temporary treatment. Note that you will not be able to undo permanent tattoos unless you go for laser treatment, which can be costly.
- The cost of receiving tattoo treatments varies greatly. This will be determined by the number of tattoos you will want to be done, size of tattoo(s), tattoo artist’s experience, complexity of the tattoo(s) and demand for the service.
- Depending on the kind of tattoo treatment you receive it may take a while for treatment area to heal fully.
- Because of its invasive nature, tattooing presents health risks. You will need to maintain a high hygiene standard to aid in fast healing of treatment area and minimize infection chances.
- It is very important to receive tattoo treatment from licensed and approved tattoo studios with qualified tattoo artists. In doing so, ensure that the tattooing machine is properly sterilized before it is used on you.