TATTOOS IN PREGNANCY AND BREASTFEEDING
Coffee shop scene
Very funny scene in the coffee shop this morning. Woman breastfeeding her 9mth old baby, just beautiful. Young guy comes into coffee shop, she obviously knows him, and whilst continuing with her feeding, asks young guy (now bright red, extremely embarrassed and not able to make eye contact) about a tattoo. He awkwardly states it’s best to wait until after stopping breastfeeding. Others in coffee shop, now taking an interest in conversation. Young guy, clearly the local tattooist, now a deeper shade of red. Baby still on/off breast (as they do at 9mths.) Mother oblivious to general embarrassment and concern by coffee shop customers. Finally young guy grabbed his take away coffee no doubt never to be seen again in that coffee shop. Gotta love a breastfeeding Mum who has her head in the clouds of rushing hormones.
So Is It Safe?
Getting a tattoo in pregnancy is not a good idea. The skin changes and stretches as the pregnancy grows, and after pregnancy your tattoo will definitely look different.
If you want to get a tattoo during pregnancy, the recommendation is to wait three months after pregnancy due to the known risks the ink or dye could have on your unborn baby. Other risks could be infection, Hepatitis B or C or possibly HIV, if proper health and safety regulations are not followed correctly.
Natural henna is an alternative that is much safer. Although they are not permanent, henna tattoos can still have the same fun affect. Natural henna is “earthy” tones that stain the skin and can last for several weeks.
It is important to know when getting a henna tattoo that natural henna is not available in black. Black henna is not natural nor is it safe for anyone to use. Black henna contains para-phenylendiamine (PPD), which is the chemical that is common in permanent hair dyes. PPD can cause burns and blister that can be difficult to diagnose and treatment could last for several months.
Same applies during breastfeeding. The main risk, is infection. So if you are really desperate to get some ink during pregnancy or whilst breastfeeding, think carefully and maybe save it up for when you have finished breastfeeding.