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Infected Tattoo Symptoms

Infected Tattoo Symptoms

Tattoos are cool and they surely can be a style statement. However, a cause of concern occurs when they start developing infections. The worst part is when one cannot identify if the tattoo has developed an infection or it is some skin allergy. This article provides some information about the symptoms of an infected tattoo.
Girija Shinde
Tattoos are different designs made with a special type of ink which is inserted inside the deepest layer of the skin, the dermis. It is said that earlier, sharp objects like bones were used to make them. However, nowadays, they are done with an electric tattoo gun on almost any part of the body. The designs have also undergone a transformation over the years. Now, people prefer funky designs like Hawaiian flower tattoos or tribal tattoos, rather than religious designs. People also like to have their own designs done instead of the ready-made designs.

Why do Tattoos Develop Infections?
The electric gun used for tattooing has a group of needles that moves up and down, inserting small dots of ink in the body. This in itself can lead to infections, as the skin has to be broken to insert the ink. If the ink used to make tattoos is of inferior quality, it will cause infections. Also, if the tattoo artist does not maintain hygiene and does not use sterilized needles, there is a chance of such an infection. Infections can also occur if proper care is not taken. It is very important to follow the instructions given by the tattoo artist.


Swelling: After the tattoo is done, the area around it does swell, but it is temporary and it heals on its own. However, if the swelling starts getting worse, it is one of the infected tattoo symptoms. Excessive swelling can occur if a person is allergic to a certain pigment used in the tattoo ink. This can happen if you get a tattoo done from an unprofessional tattoo artist, as they generally do not use ink prescribed by the FDA. It is advisable to visit a doctor if such a symptom occurs. He/she will prescribe you a topical corticosteroid ointment which will treat the swelling temporarily. If need be, the doctor will ask for further investigations to treat the root cause of the symptom.

Redness: It is natural for the skin to become red immediately after the tattoo has been inked into it. However, if the redness persists even after twenty-four hours, then it is one of the symptoms of an infected tattoo. When it is infected, there is an irritation along with redness.

Fever: There is no reason for you to have fever after getting a tattoo. So, fever is surely a sign of alarm. Do not ignore it even if your temperature is just a little above 98ยบ F. Rush to the doctor immediately. Excessive fever is a sign of spread of infection. Fever can occur even after the removal of a tattoo.

Discharge: A little blood discharge from the tattoo site is natural. However, if there is a yellowish or green discharge, or if pus is oozing from the same, it is a matter of concern. Excessive bleeding is also one of the symptoms. This can lead to complications if not treated on time.

Pain: The procedure for getting inked in itself is painful. If you have made a small and simple design, the pain will be less, because the number of needles used to make it are less. But if the design is big, the pain will be more as the number of needles used to make it will be more. So, pain is an obvious thing when you get a new tattoo. However, if the pain does not recede after two days, or if it is increasing instead of decreasing, it could be an infection.

Red Streaks: If tattooing needles are not sterilized, blood poisoning can occur. Red streaks extending from the tattoo are a symptom of blood poisoning. Red streaks are lines emerging around the tattoo. Any sores around, or on the tattoo, are also symptoms of an infection. Do not ignore these symptoms. Go to the doctor immediately if such signs are observed. General medications or home remedies can be done for other tattoo symptoms, but for red streaks it is not advisable to take any medication without the doctor's advise.

Most of the infections arise because proper aftercare is not taken. So, it is better to take care of the tattoos in order to avoid any infections later. Infected tattoo is not a very common condition. It is necessary to take the general precautions like getting it done from a professional tattoo artist, taking good care of it, and not trying to remove it at home, etc. With these precautions in mind, you could get as many tattoos as you want without worrying about infections resulting from the same.

Disclaimer: This ThoughtfulTattoos article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.