Getting A Tattoo On Antibiotics – Tips & Advice

  • Written By Dan Hunter on July 15, 2016
    Last Updated: November 8, 2020

Getting a tattoo is a major life decision. After all, it’s something many people plan for at least a few months, if not years, in advance.

Prolonged contemplation is usually part of the process, aside from those spontaneous ‘on-a-whim’ tattoos. While it’s not reported as high risk, you may want to think twice before getting a tattoo while taking antibiotics. We’ll explain why.

Can You Get a Tattoo While Taking Antibiotics?

As we all know, getting a tattoo usually involves being poked repeatedly with needles—which sometimes go deeper than you may expect. The needles will puncture the skin, and the color of your choice will be inserted.

You can get a tattoo done while taking antibiotics, however, the results may not be optimal.

Naturally, anything that enters our body or bloodstream is usually treated as a foreign object. The ink itself is generally a mix of various particles, including colored metals, such as lead and titanium.

The body will mostly try to fight the process by attempting to reject the ink. While having an infection, either on the skin or internally, antibiotics are there to help your immune system fight off the illness. Why double the work of the immune system by giving it another object to try and fight off?

A tattoo should be treated as any other wound, which means it is vital to care for it appropriately and with responsibility.

Getting A Tattoo On Antibiotics

Risks & Precautions

The best advice for anyone wanting a tattoo, but who is currently taking antibiotics, is to wait. Getting the tattoo could put your body under a lot more stress since it is already dealing with an infection.

The healing process of the tattoo may also be compromised. The body will be trying to heal the tattoo while also fighting off whatever the antibiotics are being administered for.

Remember, tattoos are permanent. It is possible to get a tattoo removed, but it’s a long, costly, and painful process. It is much better to wait until you are in good health.

If you know you’re going to be taking antibiotics, I recommend waiting at least one week after taking the last dose of medication before getting your tattoo, and never attempt to get a tattoo while sick if the risk of spreading infection is high.

If you have already made your appointment, it’s best to call the artist and ask about the process of getting a tattoo while taking antibiotics. Most artists prefer to do their work on people who are healthy, with high chances of optimal results, but they may be able to give you some helpful advice.