When you’re a tattoo lover and you start your pregnancy, one of the most common questions that might come to your mind is if you can get a tattoo while pregnant. Of course, this is a fair question as A tattoo is inked to your skin inserting pigments through punctures in the top layer of the skin.
The last thing you would want to do is to harm your baby. For this reason, in this article, we’ll bring you answers to the most common questions asked about tattoos during pregnancy.
Make sure to read till the end to know everything you need from the associated risks to the precautions and more.
Will Tattoos Stretch During Pregnancy?
Of course, your belly grows and you want to keep that dream design of yours intact. As a woman and tattoo lover, when you get pregnant, and if you have a tattoo on your belly, you may wonder if it will stretch. Well, simply put, yes, your tattoo will stretch during pregnancy.
Although tattoos are very fashionable today, getting one inked on your belly is an inadvisable idea, especially if you intend to have children in the future.
This goes without saying that, whether you gain a lot of weight, or, on the contrary, if you lose a lot of weight, the tattoo will shrink. Though, you won’t notice a big difference in your weight only changes slightly.
Can You Get A Tattoo While Pregnant?
A tattoo can be inked during pregnancy but, since there are risks associated with it, pregnant women may want to wait until the baby is born. In fact, the first 3 months are critical for the baby’s organs and any alteration at this stage can lead to irregularity and other defects that affect his development.
While the amount of ink absorbed by the body is not proven to be harmful to the fetus, doctors generally recommend waiting for at least the second semester.
Once this risk stage of 3 months has passed, the possibility of the tattoo affecting the baby is much lower. For this reason, tattoo lovers can get inked with greater peace of mind. Though, it is still mandatory to observe the important precautions since the risks are not only related to the paints that are used for drawing.
Last but not least, we recommend you to tell the tattoo artist that you are pregnant. Of course, as a pregnant woman, you are expected to go to a professional and clean tattoo studio, and the tattooers will be able to give you their opinions and guidance.
The Main Risks Of Getting A Tattoo While Pregnant
Before you even consider getting inked during pregnancy, you should do your own research about the risks associated with it and the consequences. These not only could affect your health but also that of your baby.
Infections and contraction of diseases
Although the needle only penetrates 1/16th of an inch into your skin, there are chances that the ink brings bacteria.
Of course, the use of infected needles could cause you serious infections but also infected ink. According to research by Medical News Today, the most serious infections that an infected needle or infected ink can cause are:
- Viral warts
- Herpes simplex
- Viral hepatitis
Furthermore, if the materials and equipment used are not properly sterilized, there is the possibility of contracting diseases such as:
- Hepatitis B
- Hepatitis C
- MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus)
If you, as a pregnant woman, contract an infection or illness, you will most likely pass it to your baby. In addition, you would have to take medications and antibiotics that are contraindicated for your pregnancy.
The idea is to minimize risks, so avoiding undergoing processes that can cause infections or transmit diseases will be the best for both the fetus and yourself. Needless to say, these are diseases that you want to stay away from as much as possible.
While research about epidural injections on women with tattoos is limited, the risks are known. In fact, obstetricians are concerned about giving their patients an epidural injection, which is given in the lower back during childbirth.
According to Mayo Clinic, your anesthesiologist will not inject the epidural in an area where your skin is tattooed. This is due to the fact that injecting the epidural on tattooed skin will push the chemical pigments into deeper tissues and eventually be dangerous.
As mentioned previously, women do gain weight during pregnancy, and the skin (especially that of the belly, chest, arms, and legs) is considerably stretched.
As the skin stretches, your cute little butterfly could transform into a whole seagull. In addition, the stretch marks that could appear right in the middle of the tattoo could completely disfigure it. Tattoos on the belly, buttocks, and breasts are the ones that are most at risk of altering their shape.
The Precautions To Take When Getting A Tattoo During Pregnancy
The usual aseptic standards need to be followed to avoid any infection, allergy, or general issues with your little one, as recommended by the American Pregnancy Association. Before starting to get inked, make sure of the following:
- The professional is certified and the center registered
- Gloves are worn by the tattoo artist
- The ink used comes in a sterilized packaging
- The floors, surfaces, and the tattoo parlor, in general, are clean
- All needles used are new and disposable.
- The gauze pads are packaged and unopened
Of course, all tattoo artists are expected to be clean and to follow these basic safety rules.
Safe Tattoo Alternatives During Pregnancy
Tattoos are a way of expressing our personality, our artistic taste, and our pleasure for certain things. Leaving a permanent imprint on our skin can be a symbol of good taste and that’s why so many women love them.
There are many women who want to leave an indelible memory on their skin when they get pregnant. For instance, getting inked the baby’s future name, his date of birth, or more. However, given the associated risks, what are the safest alternatives?
Temporary Tattoo Marker
If you’re looking for a safe and temporary alternative to real tattoos, drawing your own design with a tattoo marker is a great idea.
Alternatively, some tattoo artists will accept to draw a fantastic design that will eventually fade away and be totally removed from your skin. Needless to say, these won’t do any harm and there won’t be any risks associated.
A Temporary Tattoo: Henna
Henna is a paste made from the crushed leaves of a plant, called henna, which is grown in countries in South Asia and North Africa. The tattoos that are made from Henna are temporary and usually last between 7 and 14 days.
Henna tattoos are not harmful to pregnant women. To sum up, Henna tattoos are safe, they are long-lasting, and they’re very beautiful, making them one of the best alternatives to tattoos.
Temporary tattoos are safe alternatives that can be drawn or stuck to your skin. They usually last from 1 week to 2 months, depending on the quality. Also, some internationally known tattoo artists have their own temporary tattoos for sale for as cheap as $5.
Other than being beautiful, cheap, and safe, they can be removed and you can easily get a new design every so often.
How to Prevent Tattoos from Deforming During Pregnancy
There are several ways to prevent tattoos from getting deformed. you will have to prevent it from happening. Through, it is quite challenging to completely prevent it. However, you can limit the damage to your tattoo as much as possible.
To start with, you will want to moisturize your skin as much as possible. In fact, moisture means elasticity and, therefore, it will help absorb the stretch. While you might still see the difference after giving birth, it will definitely be less than if it wasn’t properly moisturized.
Also, it is important to note that, during pregnancy, our body uses our fatty acids to help the baby’s development and the mother might run low on Omegas. For this reason, go ahead and use Omega supplements to apply to your belly. We recommend getting either the Cocoa Butter Massage Lotion from Palmer’s or the Belly Butter by Burt’s Bees.
Research made by the National Institutes of Health found out that adjusting your diet to increase fatty acids by 20% would increase gestation by 5.7 days. For this reason, as a pregnant woman, you should have a fatty acid intake higher than the average.
Moreover, drink lots of water. This way, you’ll keep your skin hydrated and your tattoo will be more resistant to the pregnancy stretch.
To conclude, while there are high chances that your tattoo gets stretched during pregnancy, it is possible to avoid it by drinking loads and applying belly butter.
Can I Get An Epidural With A Tattoo On My Back?
Pregnant ladies who are wanting to get an epidural during work may stress they can’t get one since they have a tattoo on their back. However, what is the reality?
We previously mentioned that getting an epidural when you have a tattoo on your back isn’t the easiest task, it’s certainly possible.
On the off chance that you have gotten a tattoo in the previous half-year, your anesthesiologist may be somewhat more worried about giving you an epidural. This is simply because, in the first 6 months following the tattoo, the ink isn’t fixed and could get pulled up by the epidural needle.
Sure, getting an epidural injection is not always needed, but most women choose to have it for pain relief.
How Long Do After Pregnancy Do You Need To Tait To Get A Tattoo?
That is another common question asked among the tattoo-lover moms out there. Well, as a general rule of thumb, moms wait for 9 months to a year after birth to get their tattoo inked.
Given the fact that you are supposed to exclusively breastfeed your baby for the first 6 months after the birth (as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics). And that your body will get back to its normal shape and weight after a few months, getting inked after 9 months at least is a wise decision.
In any case, we’re confident that you will be busy enough taking care of your newborn and that these few months will pass by very quickly.
There are many concerns about whether or not to get a tattoo while pregnant. The first trimester of pregnancy is very important in the formation of the baby. So, it is recommended to wait at least until the second semester to get your design inked. Bear in mind that the tattoo ink can affect the development of the baby.
To conclude, to avoid complications, we recommend waiting until the baby is born, and until your body gets its normal shape before getting tattooed.
Read More: Can You Get A Tattoo While Breastfeeding?