Are you sure about your tattoo? The ink used not that much

The inks used to make tattoos rejected by the FDA. Injecting colored ink under the skin is certainly not good for you. As it is not good to stick a cigarette in your mouth, set it on fire and draw poison into your lungs. These are the obvious things that go against rationality and that our mother kept repeating to us in an attempt to dissuade us from doing them.

Don't store avocado like this: it's dangerous

But that, needless to say, at least once in our life, we have done. But if on damage caused by smoking they instructed us properly, complete with shocking images and warnings from the various ministries of health, on those deriving from tattoos the speech is not so clear. Especially because it is still not well understood danger of the inks used to get them. There has been a lot of discussion in the past about the risks of sterilizing needles, so we all now know that we need to turn to serious and scrupulous facilities. But too little has been said about the composition of pigments which are injected into the skin and which we all think are checked and approved, but which, in truth, we do not even know precisely what they contain.

La Food and Drug Administration, the body that in the United States approves dyes added in foods, cosmetics and medicines, after numerous reminders to intervene in the field of tattoos, has finally ruled on the issue by publishing a research in which it denies approval "to all chemicals used in tattoos ". In the investigation, the FDA confirmed what was already reported in 2003 by the European Commission, according to which most of the chemicals used in tattoos would be industrial pigments originally intended for other purposes, such as for the paint of cars or inink for pens. Impossible to guarantee for a use that puts them in contact with the skin for life. Unlike the European Union which has approved many pigments for cosmetic use, the FDA did not feel like endorsing even those intended for semi-permanent makeup.

So, apparently we have to resign ourselves to the evidence: despite the reassurances from the manufacturers that guarantee non-toxicity and hypoallergy of their inks, completely safe tattoo does not exist. Let alone the ecological one. All the more so now that apparently even those cannot be trusted anymore tohenna. All rejected, in short, but why? Apart from paints and pens, what exactly do they contain?

In 2005 the article appeared in Nature which revealed the results of a study done by two students from Northern Arizona University. Lesile Wagner, trying to find out why her tattoo was fading, together with fellow student Haley Finley-Jones analyzed a series of tattoo ink samples in order to try to find out their composition. The results showed that each color and brand of ink has completely different ingredients. Furthermore, the analyzes have shown that some inks have high levels of lead e Lithium, and that, in particular, the blue color inks contain a quantity of copper so high that the CT machine went haywire.

All of this has raised and continues to arouse high concern especially as the dangers that these metals can cause to humans. In fact, numerous studies have highlighted the ability of these compounds to induce serious health problems. In particular:

lead: it can cause behavioral problems, anemia, kidney problems, neurological damage such as seizures and, in rare cases, coma and death;

Lithium: can induce kidney disorders (excessive thirst, profuse urination, diabetes insipidus), neurological disorders (impaired memory and attention, hand tremors, muscle weakness), heart problems (arrhythmias), skin problems (rashes, pigment changes, psoriasis), gastrointestinal disorders (nausea, diarrhea, abdominal colic), hyperthyroidism, epilepsy, edema of the lower limbs, leukocytosis, etc;

copper: may cause eye irritation (redness, swelling and pain), skin irritation (redness, itching, burning, swelling), breathing problems, gastrointestinal problems (nausea, diarrhea and / or abdominal pain).

These side effects have been indicated for exposures that occur over long periods of time to these and other heavy metals. Calculating that the exposure in tattoos is permanent and continuous, certainly the FDA cannot be blamed for not being able to endorse its use.

In tattoos i metals are used to make permanent i pigments and the quantities present can also be quite significant with consequent variations depending on the color chosen. For example, green and blue are made from copper salts, elements approved for use in contact lenses, mobile surgical implants, and children's paints. Likewise the black pigments based on carbon or ink black from India, as well as white based ones zinc and iron oxides or purple based ones dioxazine/carbazolo, minimize health risks. Among the colors, red pigments, especially those they contain cadmium, iron oxides o mercury (cinnabar), are generally the most concerning. In particular the mercury caused allergic reactions and scars in many people, also sensitizing them to mercury from other sources such as fish or dental fillings.

In short, it is better to first make sure of the ingredients of each color used for the tattoo. This information can be difficult to find as the inks are not sold directly to consumers, and consequently there is no obligation to specify the components on the label. Some tattoo artists, however, don't mix pigments on principle and don't mind revealing their composition. If we really can't resist the charm of the tattoo, it would be good to turn exclusively to this type of professionals.

But in the light of this information, are you still convinced that you want to "ink"? Well why not, after all there are millions of tattooed people in the world! Like there are millions of smokers. Despite them, the composition of cigarettes has it under their eyes, visible every time they light one.

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