LisaBulman

ISN New Topic: Scleroderma and Tattoos

27 posts in this topic

Hi Marsha,

 

Kudos to you for following instructions and asking your scleroderma expert about it, ahead of time! Obviously you must not be on immunosuppressants or have areas of skin involvement unsuitable for tattoos. When you have the medical go-ahead then you only have the standard precautions to watch for, as outlined in our web pages on Scleroderma and Tattoos.

 

Our point isn't to "just say no" but rather to provide the information so that people with scleroderma can make an informed decision regarding tattoos, since it some instances it is ill-advised. The take-home message is that everyone with scleroderma who wants to get a tattoo should discuss it with their scleroderma expert beforehand to see if it is okay given their particular complications and medications.

 

Thank you for setting a great example for others to follow, in doing your studying and your asking ahead of time. That will give you even greater peace of mind plus put all the odds in your favor of getting a pleasant, and unregrettable, tattoo.

 

:emoticon-congratulations:

 

Now if that isn't cause for a Sclero Happy Dance, I don't know what is!

 

:emoticons-line-dance:


Warm Hugs,

 

Shelley Ensz

Founder and President

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099

 

The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

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Shelley,

I am only too glad to set an example.... smile.gif I had such a list to ask my scleroderma expert from Tattoos to suntanning, not that I am a sunbather, but I do like to garden and putz around outside the house since summers here are so very very very short!! It kinda stinks that we have to think before we do anything because of our disease, but maybe that stops us from doing knee jerk things also?!! I am on no immunisuppressant drugs and only have very limited skin tightening on my face and hands and feet... but then again I am just in the very early diagnoses of my disease..

Marsh

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Hello Marsha

 

Yes the list of considerations before going out are endless...where are the toilets, do I need my wheelchair, have I got my pain meds/reflux meds, do I need extra clothing, sun protection including parasol, how long will it take to get there/back, do I have enough stamina and what do I do if I don't...Make staying in the new going out! :lol:


Amanda Thorpe

ISN Sclero Forums Senior Support Specialist

ISN Video Presentations Manager

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(Retired) ISN Sclero Forums Assistant Manager

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International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Tattoos are far more than just fitting in with a crowd, which is quite commonplace in this thread, for some its a lifestyle others part of their belief system, etc. that scrapbooking and putting on a pretty piece of jewelry just cannot replace.

 

I just want to take a few lines to say as a tattoo enthusiast, and a sufferer of morphea, I am a bit taken a back by the general undertones of tattoos are bad and it seems to me that people who wrote this regard tattoos to be bad point regardless of sclero. With having a nice big tattoo remorse link.

 

I understand the complications people may now have getting tattoos (I only found out today that I may not be able to get tattoos again) but 99% of these are pretty much the big scary legends people used to warn their kids about back in the 60s about tattoos, "Oh you'll get the AIDS," "You'll regret it," "There's metal and petrol in the inks!". And in this day and age these things are exactly that, old tales.

 

Every licensed tattoo parlour will use one use needles and everything you can see is sterile, medical grade metals are used in the equipment, all tattoo artists have blood tests and screened for blood disease and you can now get organic inks. The red reaction is most common place but good quality inks with good quality pigments FDA approved are what's in shops now.

 

Also skin testing can be done prior to tattooing to check for reactions and the first signs of any problems you may face. Any smart person here will be able to tell a good studio from a kitchen wizard and will know most of this already, if you want a tattoo, yes go to your doctor, tell them what you want to get checked out, understand there COULD be reactions and complications but mainly they will come from a bad choice of artist and location.

 

Yes, speak to many many artists and ask if they know about sclero diseases, ask to see their inks and license, ask to see their blood tests, ask to see their cleaning stations, all these things should be done prior to tattoos regardless of sclero anyway. Its all common sense. And most infections and blood diseases and tattoo complications come from bad aftercare rather than the studio or artist. Another side of the coin for you to consider.

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Hi Zomby,

 

I'm sorry you may no longer be a good candidate for tattoos. I do think it is important to try to identify what purpose they serve for us, so that we can be sure to try to satisfy that same need in other ways.

 

For example, if our proposed tattoo is of religious significance, but we aren't a good candidate for tattoos, we should try to find other ways to incorporate religious symbols or activities into our life in some way, shape or form. 

 

If something is important enough to rate a tattoo for us, it seems to me it should also be important enough to include in other ways in our life, and we shouldn't deprive ourselves of that joy, that symbol, that meaning. 

 

If the tattoo we wish we could have is a lovely flower, perhaps we should take up gardening, buy fresh flowers every week, learn how to paint flowers, teach children how to paint flowers, or even wear flower-scented perfumes. We should explore the whole range, and not limit ourselves to only one possible expression of something we love, but rather, embrace it every way we can.

 

So my question to you is, if you were able to get another tattoo today, what design would you choose?  What would it symbolize for you?  And then, if it were not possible to express this desire through a permanent tattoo, what other ways could you manifest this desire? 

 

For example, would you select a permanent tattoo of your favorite musical group?  If so, perhaps you could learn how to make your own temporary tattoos and reapply them as needed, buy another CD from the group, go to their concert, buy their t-shirt, volunteer for their fan club, or even start a music blog. Don't just think, oh, I can't have the tattoo, I have to just "forget" about this whole interest!  Instead, consider using it as an impetus to expand your interest and perhaps do things you wouldn't otherwise have even considered.

 

Your suggestions on investigating everything about a parlor before getting a tattoo are outstanding!

 

A major misunderstanding here in the U.S. (I realize this could be entirely different in the U.K.) is that people assume that all tattoo artists are trained, licensed, and regulated.

 

Whereas, in most jurisdictions that is simply not the case. Basically, in many states, anyone can set up shop as a tattoo artist, without any required training or even a basic understanding of health concepts. It would be rare, to the max, for tattoo artists to actually have any medical training regarding scleroderma.  See:  Tattoo Certification on About.com.

 

In the U.S., it is basically a case of "buyer beware" when it comes to tattoos, even though you would logically think that all of the parlors should be required by federal law to have training in blood-borne pathogens, at an absolute minimum, wouldn't you?

 

In areas where training, certification and licensing of tattoo parlors is required by law, people who are good candidates medically can be more intent on just selecting the artist, trying to find a tattoo and area of application that they are just as likely to love now as they will ten or twenty years from now, and not have to worry about all the equipment and procedures, as well.

 

:emoticons-group-hug:


Warm Hugs,

 

Shelley Ensz

Founder and President

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099

 

The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

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I understand what you are saying trying to reproduce the meaning of the tattoo in other ways but the main point to my post was that, it felt that, the majority or comments held the undertones that tattoos were bad: period. And when I mentioned religious tattoos I meant more like the Maori people who use facial tattoos everyday in their social constructions to know where they belonged to and what they done, etc. And some people as I said, take this as a lifestyle, it's not just going and getting a tattoo because it means something; I have three tattoos and only one of them have any specific meaning and representation; some people just enjoy the art form and being a walking canvas. You can try your hardest to reproduce the feeling of getting a significant tattoo but you'll never be able to, the intimate art form is something quite irreplaceable you can't duplicate that if it's already been so enveloped in your life. My post was not disputing any information or opinions before me, it was just good information for those like me on this site who have accepted the lifestyle and passion for tattoos. And that is something that has always sickened me regarding American laws on body modification; it's far too lenient regarding just who opens a shop for such things. Here in the UK it's very strict. I do apologize if any of my posts here offend someone at all. I am only here to offer another side of the coin as I said. I am going to my local tattoo artist on Thursday to discuss inks and such with him, I will post any other information he gives me for those of you reading who like me wish to continue getting inked. Please remember to check with your specialist and local time served license tattoo artist prior.

 

Oh and if all goes well my next tattoo is going to be a sinking pirate ship on my calf. :)

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Oh and regarding how they feel about it in 10-20 years later, if they have remorse about getting it they obviously didn't take enough time to think it through; if you decide to get a tattoo and one of the things you're worried about is the future and how you'll like it, then don't get it. And the argument "how will it look when you're 60" is easily answered by "please remind me how good you'll look when you're 60", everyone ages differently.  No one will be perfectly smooth unblotched and prestine when they are old. Sorry for the many replies I have to use my phone and it's not the best for keeping up conversation in forums.

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Hi Zomby,

 

Alas, I'm 60 and not perfectly smooth, unblotched and prestine -- I wish!! ;) :lol:

 

Perhaps I should get a tattoo; I feel that midlife crisis bearing down on me after all!!  :P :D


Jo Frowde

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Hi Zomby,

 

Alas, I'm 60 and not perfectly smooth, unblotched and prestine -- I wish!! ;) :lol:

 

Perhaps I should get a tattoo; I feel that midlife crisis bearing down on me after all!! :P :D

 

 

This would quite possibly be the worst time for you or anyone to get a tattoo haha, buy a sexy car, or hire a sexy gardener for the mid life crisis haha  :lol:

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I would love to have my eyebrows tattooed so I would not be chained to my eyebrow make up and pencil! :lol:  :lol: I am, however, afraid that I will cause the morphea to appear on my face or even worse bullous morphea!

 

I had a friend, when at work, who had her lip line tattooed and it unfortunately looked like she'd put her lippy on whilst drunk! It was awful and she was stuck with it, It was uneven and way, way above the natural line of her lips.

 

If I do ever have it done I'll post a picture but don't hold your breath.

 

Take care.


Amanda Thorpe

ISN Sclero Forums Senior Support Specialist

ISN Video Presentations Manager

ISN Blogger

(Retired) ISN Sclero Forums Assistant Manager

(Retired) ISN Email Support Specialist

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Hi Amanda,

 

Mother nature has also mostly abandoned my eyebrows and I would like nothing better than a makeup tattoo to solve the issue permanently. And I think it would be a tremendous advantage to have my lip line increased and enhanced. Well, if neither were done wonky, that is.

 

Unfortunately, they will have to remain my pipe dreams because I am one of those unsuitable candidates. So I've adapted by setting up a makeup table, so that I can at least sit down comfortably and ergonomically while doing my hair and makeup.

 

The beauty of no eyebrow tattoo though is that my eyebrows look different every day!  It's fun to just draw a line straight across the forehead for the trendy uni-brow look. 

 

Actually, given an audience medicated into a stupor, I could probably do a two-hour comedy routine on the subject of eyebrow designs, makeup, and the entertaining yet embarrassing hazards of melting eyebrows.

 

:emoticons-group-hug:


Warm Hugs,

 

Shelley Ensz

Founder and President

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099

 

The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

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Oh, Shelley, they are different everyday, well that's okay the problem is when the left and the right eyebrow look like they belong to different days! I know that no one person has identical eyebrows but for the average person their eyebrows at least look like they belong to the same face! As for myself, naturally each eyebrow looks totally different which makes enhancing them a tricky process, if I am not careful I exaggerate the difference between each brow and well it's not a good look.

 

Pathetically I find myself with eyebrow envy and when I look at famous women I am always drawn to their eyebrows, my husband looks bemused when I comment on what lovely eyebrows such and such has. At work my friend and I would talk along these lines and agreed that Elizabeth Taylor had the most amazing brows ever, second for me is Rachel Weisz.

 

Take care.


Amanda Thorpe

ISN Sclero Forums Senior Support Specialist

ISN Video Presentations Manager

ISN Blogger

(Retired) ISN Sclero Forums Assistant Manager

(Retired) ISN Email Support Specialist

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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