Hepatitis C Risk Factors
Hepatitis C spreads through blood-to-blood contact. Exposure to the virus may occur through blood infusions and intravenous drug use.
If a person shares drug equipment, such as needles and syringes, they may risk exposure to infected blood. Injection drug use is the cause of 60% of new cases of hepatitis C every year.
Blood supplies undergo screening for conditions that can transmit via blood, such as HCV. However, before 1992, healthcare professionals did not screen for HCV. A person who has received a blood transfusion or organ transplant before this time may have been at higher risk of exposure to HCV.
Although less common, other ways hepatitis C may spread include :
- Birth: There is a small chance that a person with hepatitis C will pass on the infection to their infant, estimated at roughly a 6% chance.
- Healthcare: Since exposure to a personâs blood is a possibility in the medical profession, there is the chance of hepatitis C transmission if healthcare professionals do not follow proper procedures, although this is rare.
- Sex with a person infected with hepatitis C: Although uncommon, people can spread HCV through sexual contact. Risk factors can
Dont Be Fooled By Stigma
Do not let the stigma against these diseases scare you into not getting the tattoo you want. There is zero chance of the artist becoming infected with the disease. Simple knowledge of HIV and Herpes will tell you that these diseases begin to die as soon as they come into contact with air outside the body.
The only way for there to be even a chance of infection is if the tattoo shop does not use new ink pods with each tattoo, does not properly disinfect equipment, or if they reuse needles.
All of these practices are incredibly unsafe, and no licensed tattoo parlor will do any of these things. As long as you get your tattoo from a licensed tattoo parlor, there is zero chance that the artist or anyone else in the shop will become infected.
It is actually illegal in many countries, including Ireland, and the United States to refuse service of any kind on the basis of a blood borne disease like HIV or Herpes.
Dont get stressed if you are denied a tattoo on this basis. There is bound to be another shop that will be happy to tattoo you. It might even be just around the corner.
If you a shop does deny you services for having HIV or Herpes, you can report them for a violation of the American with Disabilities Act . To file a complete, you can file out a form online at this site: ada.gov.
Get Inked At A Licensed Shop
As a general rule of thumb, you should stay clear from unlicensed tattoo parlors. A licensed tattoo parlor will display their license up front and center in the front of their shop. If you do not see these licenses in the lobby, you can ask one of the shop employees to show you them. Or, you may just want to leave instead. A reputable tattoo shop will definitely have them on display in their lobby.
In addition, you can be much more confident a licensed shop is taking the proper steps to ensure everything is clean and sterilized.
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The Risk Of Viral Hepatitis From Tattoos
Tattoos are all the rage these days, with shows like LA Ink showing off tattoos and spotlighting tattoo culture. While tattoos allow you to express who you are in a permanent way, getting a tattoo carries a risk of developing an infection, especially if the tattoo artist doesn’t use strict safety procedures.
Selecting Where To Get A Tattoo Or Piercing
Here are some tips to help you make safe and informed decisions about where and how to get a tattoo or piercing:
- Check out many different artists. Is the artist a professional? If the artist is not a professional, your chances of getting poor work done, as well as getting infections and viruses increases.
- Everything New, Every Time. The artist should use new needles, ink, ink pots, jewelry, and tattooing stencils basically everything that cannot be properly sterilized.
- Ask questions and don’t be afraid to walk out! A good artist will always be comfortable answering anything you have to ask such as: How many years have you been tattooing/piercing for?, Where did you apprentice, May I see your portfolio?, Do you use new needles/ink/jewelry/gloves/razors/etc. every time?
- Look for: Health Board Inspection Certificate, clean and tidy work area, an autoclave to properly sterilize the permanent equipment, biohazard containers to throw away used needles and other pieces of equipment that are exposed to bodily fluids.
- Piercing guns cannot be properly sterilized because they are made of plastic. Do not allow yourself to be pierced with a piercing gun.
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Can Hiv Be Prevented
Yes. HIV/AIDS can be prevented because there is no cure for AIDS, people must be very careful to change their sexual behaviour. Here are some ways to help prevent the spread of AIDS:
- Abstain or delay sex
- Be faithful to one uninfected partner
- Use a latex condom every time you have sex with every partner
- Do not do drugs or share injection needles
- Seek early and complete treatment for STIs
- Get the facts on STIs and AIDS
Is There Really A Link
Research from the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases showed that out of 3,871 people studied , there was a significant association between having one or more tattoos and having hepatitis C. In short, the study found that people with hepatitis C were almost four times more likely to have tattoos. This study did not prove causality but did control for other risk factors such as intravenous drug use.
However, the setting in which a tattoo is given matters a great deal. Other studies have found no increase in the risk of hepatitis C infection when tattooing was performed in professional studios with high-quality infection control procedures in place. Conversely, tattoos given in prisons or other non-professional environments carry much greater risk for transmitting hepatitis C.
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What You Can Do
Not having sex is a 100% effective way to make sure you dont get or transmit HIV through sex. If youre sexually active, you can lower your risk by choosing sexual activities that carry a lower risk for HIV than anal sex. You can also do other things to reduce your risk, including taking medicine to prevent or treat HIV and using condomsthe right way, every time. Condoms and medicine to prevent or treat HIV are highly effective at preventing HIV if used correctly. But the medicines are much less effective if you dont take them daily as prescribed, and condoms can sometimes break or come off during anal sex. Using a water-based or silicone lubricant can help prevent condoms from breaking or slipping.
Talking openly and frequently with your partner about sex can help you make decisions that decrease your risk of getting or transmitting HIV. Learn more about how to get the conversation started.
Certain things about your sex and injection partners can put you at increased risk for getting or transmitting HIV. Explore Estimate the HIV Risk to learn more.
Explore other resources from CDC:
To Tattoo Or Not To Tattoo By Jodha
“Even when it comes to HIV and tattoos the messages are pretty mixed. Can people with HIV get tattoos? Is there a risk to a tattoo artist in inking someone who’s HIV positive? Does a tattoo heal differently on someone with HIV?
The doctor I visited told me not to tattoo. Why? Because I am HIV positive. Because it will transmit to others through needles. Because the healing will be slow, there will be infection, there will be pus or blisters. Yes. Even in 2021, there are some doctors who are not up-to-date and will discourage about something which is almost ZERO RISK, especially when following hygiene and safety measures.” Continue reading…
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What Is A Window Period
When a person gets infected it may take 6 weeks or up to 3 months before antibodies to HIV are detected in the blood. The HIV test looks for antibodies. When these antibodies are detected the person is diagnosed HIV positive. A person can be positive and the test shows negative because the test was done during the window period.
Why Transmission Is Unlikely
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , the risk of HIV through tattooing or body piercing is considered low to negligible.
While the CDC accedes that there is a theoretical risk of transmission, there has yet to be a single documented case of HIV by any form of body art.
This is largely due to the fact that transmission could only occur if:
Within the context of body art, the likelihood of these conditions being satisfied as incredibly slim. The opportunity for infection is nowhere near as strong as, say, injecting drug use in which HIV-infected blood is delivered directly into a vein.
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Everything You Need To Know About Tattoos And Hiv
According to most sources, there have been no documented cases of a single case of HIV being contracted through tattooing. Still, though, were told that getting tattoos is risky because theres a chance of getting this particular disease. Why?
HIV is a very misunderstood illness, even in 2017. When it comes to HIV and tattoos the messages are pretty mixed. Can people with HIV get tattoos? Is there are risk to a tattoo artist in inking someone whos HIV positive? Does a tattoo heal different on someone with HIV? We looked into all of these questions, and more, to fill you in on everything you need to know about tattoos and HIV.
Nothing But The Truth By Connieljohnson
“The day my mother announced that she had been diagnosed with AIDS, my entire world shifted. Through tear-filled eyes, she explained that she contracted the illness from her recently deceased ex-fiance and wasn’t sure how much longer she had to live. I instantly wailed as if she was already gone. At the time, I was a 17-year-old high school senior filled with the anticipation that accompanies graduation and college plans. When my wailing ended, a different conversation began. My mother reached under her bed, retrieved a thick, evergreen book, and began thumbing through the pages. She landed on “autoimmune illnesses”. Her mission: search her medical dictionary until she found a kinder, gentler illness that resembled AIDS. “If anyone asks, I have Lupus. You understand me?” “Yes ma’am,” my sister and I agreed. This was our story and we were committed to sticking to it. June 1994, I went away to college. By some minor miracle, my mother scraped up enough money for me to attend DeVry in Atlanta. I returned home at the end of my first trimester to a mother I no longer recognized. In three short months, she dwindled from a plump, vivacious Brickhouse to an unrecognizable shell of herself. By January 1995, she was gone.” Continue reading…
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Benefits Of Getting A Tattoo While Breastfeeding
Getting a tattoo doesnt offer specific benefits to a breastfeeding baby or to breastfeeding itself. But getting a tattoo may feel personally gratifying or fulfilling to a breastfeeding parent, which is certainly valuable. Sometimes parents feel like they lose their sense of self when they are parenting small children, and getting a tattoo may be a way to recapture that feeling of independence and self-expression.
Can I Get A Tattoo If I Have Hiv Or Herpes
Tattoos have become far less taboo in recent history. They were once considered to be a sign of criminal activity, or unprofessional. These days nearly one in six people have or will get a tattoo in their lives. This means if you want a tattoo, you should get one.
Even if you are one of the million plus people who have a blood borne disease like HIV or Herpes. This article will discuss some of the basics of getting inked when you have HIV or Herpes.
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He Died Without Apologizing By Destiny Smith
“It’s been almost four years since I contracted HIV. In the back of my mind I’ve always held onto a little piece of hope. Hope that the man who gave it to me would one day apologize. One day we would cross paths and we would have to have that long conversation because it was time.
Almost a month ago I found out he passed away in March of this year. I was fine, absolutely fine, before I found out. The day after I found out, my mind and body shut down. It was really different. The last time I felt those feelings was the day I found out about my status. I don’t know if his death was related to the virus or if it was something else. We never spoke after our break up.” Continue reading…
Who Are At Risk Of Getting Hiv/aids
- Persons who have sex without a condom.
- Persons with many sex partners
- Persons who have had repeated Sexually Transmitted Infections
- Male and female prostitutes
- Sexually active homosexual and bisexual males
- Persons who have sex with someone who is HIV positive
- Past or present users of needles to inject illicit drugs, e.g. heroine
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Can You Get A Tattoo While Pregnant
While tattoos were once a rarity among women, in recent years it has become increasingly commoneven trendyfor ladies to sport ink. According to a 2017 survey, 33% of women reported having a tattoo. If youre among the one in three whove gotten a tat, or if youve always thought of doing so, theres one condition that may bring your inky dreams to a halt: pregnancy.
Wondering about the rules around getting a tattoo during your nine months of baby-making? Heres what you need to know.
What We Know About Kissing
Theres no chance of getting HIV from closed-mouth or social kissing, and you cant get HIV through saliva. In some very rare cases, people have gotten HIV from deep, open-mouth French kissing because they and their partners had blood in their mouths from bleeding gums or sores . But the chance of getting HIV from deep, open-mouth kissing is much lower than from most other sexual activities.
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How Transmission Happens
Tattoo artists create their designs by injecting ink into the second layer of a persons skin, called the dermis. They do this by using a tattoo machine that pierces the skin with a set of small, high-speed needles. In contrast, body piercing uses a needle to pierce the skin.
Due to broken skin, certain infections can theoretically be passed from one customer to another if the gun or needle is not properly sterilized. But what about them?
How To Protect Yourself
Reusing dirty needles is an obvious safety violation, but it’s not good enough to just find out if the artist uses clean needles. When you’re dealing with injections and blood, you have to be aware of other potential hazards. For example:
- Is the tattoo parlor licensed? Choose a tattoo parlor and artist that are licensed and certified according to the regulations of the state it operates in.
- Does the artist wash his or her hands? Though artists usually wear gloves , they must also wash their hands before putting gloves on and after taking them off. Make sure they only put on a fresh, new pair.
- Is the equipment sterilized? Sterilized is different from being clean. By wiping over something with a towel, the instrument will look clean, but it could still be infectious. Sterilization involves applying chemicals or heat, killing bacteria and viruses.
- Are work surfaces clean? Make sure the work area is cleaned and sterilized. You don’t want your clean tattoo needle to be exposed to germs from the table surface or other equipment.
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Tips For Safe Tattoos
Here are a few safety tips that may be common knowledge for most people. However, it doesnt hurt to review some safety measures for people who are deciding on getting their first tattoo.
- Get a tattoo from a licensed, reputable facility. Keep in mind tattoo regulations and requirements vary by state. Therefore, check with your local department of health.
- Choose another facility if there is evidence of poor hygiene such as work surfaces, chairs, and equipment not properly cleaned and sterilized.
- Check to make sure your artist uses a fresh pair of gloves and washes their hands before starting the procedure.
- Make sure you observe your artist removing needles from a new, sealed package. Needles and razors should never be reused.
- The area of skin being tattooed should be swabbed with a disinfectant such as alcohol before tattooing.
- Fresh tattoos should be covered with sterile gauze or a bandage.