Effects of tattooing human bodies

Residents of Kiambu County have been cautioned against tattooing their body parts as they tend to have a long term effect on one’s immune system.

Speaking to KNA in her office on Saturday, a dermatologist at Kiambu level 4 hospitals, Elizabeth Mungai said young people were mostly affected and it was due to peer pressure which they should guard against.

Mungai noted most of the youth in their early 30s and 40s with tattoos later regretted putting them but it was not reversible.

The dermatologist noted that tattoos led to formation of granulamar in the area that had been tattooed as sometimes the body treated the tattoo as a foreign pigment and as unwanted substance.

She explained that having a tattoo was problematic because tattooed skin secretes 50 percent less sweat that contained sodium as one of its components which was later re-absorbed but it becomes impossible for the tattooed skin.

She added that a tattoo was as a result of deposition of exogenous pigment into the skin which causes injury to the tissues causing acute inflammatory reactions, which recedes within 2-3weeks after the skin was tattooed.

If you have a skin condition like eczema, it would be unsafe to put tattoo because it can cause flare-ups which are triggered by skin coming into contact with irritants and in this case the ink become irritating, she said.

The specialist pointed out that tattoos caused allergic skin reactions such as itchy rash at the affected areas.

She added that one could also get Keloids which were raised areas by an overgrown of scar tissue.

Another risk, the specialist noted, was that one can contract blood borne disease such as tetanus if the equipment used were contaminated with infected blood.

The medic pointed out that the only way one can remove a tattoo is through lasers which shatters pigment particles under the skin which can lead to complications such as pain and blisters and there is no 100 percent guarantee of the effectiveness of the process.

Reuben Mwangi a, 50, old resident of Kiambu Sub County said that when he was 19 because of peer pressure he tattooed his skin and later on developed some growth which forced him to turn to the laser so as to get rid of the tattoo.

Mwangi with a lot of regret went for laser sessions at it took him 3 sessions which were painful and unbearable.

The process is expensive. It cost me Sh30, 000 to completely get rid of tattoo which was a great loss as putting the tattoo cost him just Sh5, 000, he revealed.

He cautioned youth not to be lured into tattooing for they have serious consequences.

He also revealed that he missed to be recruited in the armed forces in 2016 because of the tattoos on his body.

Source: Kenya News Agency