Hepatitis B and Tattoo
Tattoos are a form of self-expression. It brings cultural significance and recognition regardless of the image you want to ink on your body. It is an art to convey your achievements and symbolizes your personality. It is an interpretation of your life and accomplishments.
While having tattoos can be celebratory, it poses a risk of possible hepatitis B infection. Besides the permanent image inked on your body, the infection can happen if contaminated tattoo equipment is used. Following safety procedures is a must to ensure that this viral transmission does not happen.
What does it mean to have hepatitis B? When diagnosed with this condition, you are subjected to liver failure or cirrhosis. Without proper treatment, this infection can become chronic.
How is a tattoo linked with this infection? Getting a tattoo involves piercing your skin with needles. This form of art observes the injection of tiny amounts of black ink into the dermis. The larger the image you want to be tattooed on your skin, the more ink is needed.
Since the needle comes in contact with the blood, there is a high chance for the transmission to occur. Viruses such as HBV transmits through blood, making tattoos an agent for this infection. This is a common occurrence if an artist uses dirty and contaminated tattoo equipment. Such a case is alarming if the artist has been using the same equipment on more than one client.
How to prevent hepatitis B transmission through tattoos?
A tattoo artist must follow safety procedures when doing their art to the customers. Below are important ways to ensure that you prevent this infection from spreading while on a tattoo session.
- Go to a licensed tattoo parlor – A licensed artist is someone you need to look for. A certified and licensed tattoo parlor is more likely to use clean and sanitized equipment.
- Always ask your artist – There is no shame in asking about cleanliness when getting a tattoo. You can inquire if the equipment used is sanitized and uncontaminated. You can also advise your artist to wash their hands before starting.
- Make sure everything is sterilized – Make it a habit to ask the parlor if they use sterilized needles.
Getting a tattoo is risky. After the session, obtain immediate medical attention if you are diagnosed with the infection. If you suspect viral exposure, get yourself tested immediately.