Have you got a new tattoo job done?
Welcome to the world of body art. With 38% of the global respondents having at least one tattoo, it is quite evident that how much people adore this form of body modification. While you have invested a reasonable amount of time, money, and of course, have put yourself into discomfort, you want it to stay timeless and problem-free. For pain you can switch to a numbing cream like Dr. Numb which comes with 5% lidocaine. Its application can desensitize your skin for three to four hours.
However, you need to understand that a new tattoo is essentially an open wound. Especially, during the healing period, you have to be extra careful. As your skin starts to heal, there are some common symptoms you might encounter. The list includes minor swelling, itching, and scabbing. When it comes to swelling and itching, these tend to vanish after some days. But as far as scabbing is concerned, it is there to stay for longer. So, is it ok for your skin to turn white, flaky over time?
Is it normal for a tattoo to have scabbing?
If you are the initial days of tattoo healing period and have got light scabs, you can relax at this point. Also if it turns out to be itchy as well, this indicates your skin is repairing itself. Here you need to make sure that you don’t pick or scratch them off. Else it will be hampering your tattoo and its healing speed. On the contrary, if your skin has started developing gigantic scabs, there is a little to worry. Usually, heavy scabbing occurs when:
- Your skin has started developing an infection.
- Proper aftercare procedures are not followed after getting the tattoo.
- The tattoo artist was too heavy-handed and worked over the same area leading to damage.
Hence, the answer to above question is YES. It is quite common for tattoos to scab but it is not necessary. For the slight scabbing, you don’t need to do much. The best thing could be simply leaving it to recover naturally. Meanwhile make sure you don’t pick at the scabs. In case, you accidentally knock off one, be careful and let them dry. Scratching can be really harmful; avoid it as far as possible.
Why light scabs aren’t harmful?
You might be wondering why not to worry for light scabs, right? As per the experts, you will experience scabbing as part of the healing. It occurs due to the drying process after getting a tattoo. When your skin heals, it starts forming crusty, crumbly coagulations of blood or plasma, referred to as scabs. When these occur at small scale, they serve a valuable purpose of protecting the wound from bacteria. Actually, it is the white blood cells in your body which work vigorously underneath your skin to kill any germs. Plus, these help heal and repair the new skin forming. Gradually, the scabs will crumble and fall off. So you will be left with exposing the freshly healed, healthy skin, and newly inked tattoo.
Is scabbing on a tattoo symptom for an infection? How to prevent it?
It would be wrong to say that scabs are an indication for your tattoo to be infected. However, for an infected tattoo it is common to have scabs formation, but it is also accompanied with fluid. In order to prevent scabbing, here is something to follow.
- After getting a tattoo when you go home, make sure the surrounding around you are clean. It will help prevent your new tattoo from getting into contact with any kind of bacteria.
- As stated by your artist, take the wrap off and let it dry in air for some time. Next step includes cleaning of your new ink design. For this you will be using an antibacterial foam or natural soap. Just lather a decent amount and wash your tattoo gently.
- Avoid using washcloth, sponge, or brush, as this could rip your new tattoo apart. You can play safe with your hand. Use lukewarm water to rinse your tattoo and skin. Let the water flow until all the fluid is gone.
- You can leave it to dry, assuring that you steer away from the sun. Plus, you can apply a small amount of aftercare cream to your skin. Just a little amount is enough else it will keep your skin too moist and prevents the scabs from drying.
- Harmful UV rays can be dreadful for your skin and tattoo. Even if you have to step out of your home, you can apply a generous amount of a reliable sunscreen cream.
Last but not the least, to boost the healing speed and keep scabs from forming, keep your tattoos clean. Simply, avoid anything dirty to get in touch.
What are the major don’ts if your tattoo scabs?
Just like there are some important things to help your skin heal faster, there are some very important don’ts to be followed when your tattoo scabs. Have a look:
1. Never pick at your scabs:
Does it sound repetitive? Well, it is the NUMBER ONE RULE if you want to keep your tattoo in good state. Whether you get a big design or a smaller one, a black and white or a colorful one, if you begin to pick scabs off, you are inviting problems. It can greatly increase your chances of pulling ink out of your skin and make your skin prone to infection. Remember, it will take quite some time for the ink to set into the lower layers of skin. During the initial days of healing period there is plenty of ink lying in the upper layers. When you pick at the scabs, ink can easily be pulled out and you will be left with a patchy looking tattoo.
2. Never over moisturize your tattoo:
It is important to apply a lotion to a new tattoo to keep it nourished and hydrated. But when it comes to scabbing, never apply too much of your moisturizer. Reason being, when you smother your freshly inked skin with thick layer of lotion, the moisture gets trapped between and is soaked up by scabs. Hence, they turn soggy and gooey.
3. Never scratch your tattooed skin:
Another not-to-do thing in the list is scratching. It is worse than picking off your scabs as it can actually cause more damage. The tattoo ink act as a foreign particle in your body, and chances for your skin to react are high. So if your tattoo or skin around it starts itching, make sure to resist that urge to scratch. At times, it can become irresistible. For such situations, you can try applying a little amount of numbing cream. You can use the same which you used before tattooing. Dr. Numb will help blocking the itch signals at the nerve endings. Hence, you will not feel itching for several hours, and avoiding scratching becomes possible.
Be very careful with these as failure to stick to the above stated rules can lead to a number of problems. To reduce the healing times and chances a loss of ink from your tattoo, you have to be cautious.