6

Tattoos, once considered a rare artistic expression have now become the norm, but there’s more to them than meets the eye.

It is now a common occurrence for the average person to have a tattoo, and often not just one. But how dangerous is it to get tattooed? You might want to think again.

The ink used in tattooing contains heavy metals, which have been shown to be detrimental for your health is present in the body in anything larger than minute numbers.

Red tattoo ink is known to contain mercury, which can play havoc with many internal body systems when present even in a small amount.

Shockingly, the U.S Food and Drug Administration who rule over the tattoo parlors do not make it a legal requirement to release the ingredients of their inks, as a way of protecting the ‘trade secrets’.

Records show that 36% of 18-25 year old’s have tattoos as well as 40% of 26-40 year old’s. That’s a figure of 45 million Americans who have willingly let an unknown ingredient be injected into their skin and bloodstream permanently.

It is thought that many of the colors used in tattoo parlors are industrial, the same as those used in printer ink, or car paint.

Medical complications of tattoos can include allergic reactions, scarring, inflammation and even problems when MRI scanning.

There is even a link between tattoos and cancer, with the ink being a possible carcinogen.

Dr. Bob Haley and Dr. Paul Fischer at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas found that tattoos may be the biggest reason for the spread of hepatitis C, “We found that commercially acquired tattoos accounted for more than twice as many hepatitis C infections as injection-drug use. This means it may have been the largest single contributor to the nationwide epidemic of this form of hepatitis.”