Think Before You Ink

You’re young and you want to immortalize a memory forever on your skin. 15 years later, you’d like to erase that memory from your mind…but you can’t because it has been tattooed on your skin. Recent studies show that 1/3 of people who have tattoos end up regretting the decision to ever get inked.

What many dermatologists wish that their patients knew before getting a tattoo is that the ink is placed in a deep layer of the skin. This dermis layer is the layer of skin that leaves a scar if it becomes damaged. While superficial damage to the skin will typically heal with little to no residual mark, when deeper layers of the skin are damaged the tissue cannot repair itself without leaving a scar. Tattoos damage the dermis layer of skin, and there is no ointment or bleaching cream that can remove a tattoo without leaving a scar.

Laser tattoo removal has proven to be the best at eliminating a tattoo. However, even after repeated laser treatments, a shadow of the tattoo usually remains. Tattoo artists use a high quality ink in high quantities. When this permanent ink is tattooed into the skin, it is very difficult to remove. Laser tattoo removal treatments blast the ink colors one at a time. Therefore, for people with colorful tattoos it is often necessary to undergo many treatments over a period of several months to remove a tattoo.

Dermatologists recommend that everyone stops to think before they ink. The removal process is a very intensive and expensive process. If you do decide to have a tattoo removed, make sure that you have your appointments with a board-certified dermatologist who has experience with laser tattoo removal.

Posted on behalf of Dr. John Kayal, Northwest Georgia Dermatology

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