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Can I get a tattoo while pregnant?

Is it safe to get a tattoo while I'm pregnant?
Submitted by Parents.com Team

Getting inked has some serious risks that you're better off avoiding while pregnant. Dirty facilities and needles can spread infections like Hepatitis B and HIV. There have also been no studies done on the effects that tattoo ink may have on your baby's health and development. But if you're determined to get a tattoo while you're pregnant, do follow these tips to be as safe as possible:

• Tell the tattoo artist that you're pregnant, so he can take extra precautions, like being certain that the tools are clean.
• Wait until the second trimester when your baby's major organs, bones, nerves, and muscles have already developed.
• Make sure the tattoo artist is licensed.
• Check to see that the tattoo parlor uses sterilized equipment. It should have a machine called an autoclave that cleans tattoo instruments using heat and steam.
• The tattoo artist should use new, unopened gloves, bandages, dyes, and needles for each client.

It's also a good idea to remember that shifting hormones can cause your complexion to change a lot during pregnancy, so the tattoo you get in your sixth month could look very different after you deliver. If you're planning to have an epidural during labor, avoid getting a tattoo on your lower back too close to your due date. There's no evidence that back tattoos interfere with epidurals, but some hospitals will not give them to women whose tattoos are new or not totally healed.

Copyright 2009

The answers from our experts are for educational purposes only. Please always refer to your child's pediatrician and mental health expert for more in-depth advice.

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If you seriously cant wait a few months till you deliver your baby then you should reevaluate your priorites. A tat is not a life or death sort of thing why bother risking it? When I was pregnant with my second one I finally had the chance that I had been waiting a long time for to get a tat that I had been waiting for, well, I waited even longer because it wasnt worth the risk.
Submitted by Baybgurl0116
okay im a tattoo artist so lemme comment. no its not safe to get a tattoo while your pregnant! but not because tattoos parlors are dirty (ahem, answerer number one!!!!) the main reason is that because it takes white blood cells to heal a tattoo. so it takes away more from your already stressed out immune system, making you more prone to infections (staph, ink poisoning, etc) and sickness. plus youre more sensitive to the pigments in ink, making you more susceptible to an allergic reaction.
Submitted by dezxiy
no way! and even if you wanted to i think most of your body is probably larger then usual so it wouldnt be want you thought when you weren't pregnant anymore. just wait untill baby comes. you'll be happy you did.
Submitted by dreamverve