LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Jazmin Tineo had something she wanted to get off her chest – a tattoo that read: “Ne Te quaesiveris extra.”
It is Latin for “do not seek outside yourself.”
“I got it when I was 18. I remember hearing it during one of my lecture classes,” Tineo recalled. “This is deep. I need this tattoo right away.”
Eight years later, need turned into regret, prompting her to see a dermatologist to have her inspirational tattoo removed.
“It’s a distraction and takes away from my professional look,” Tineo admitted.
She said her mom warned her not to get the tattoo eight years ago and could not resist telling her: “I told you so.”
It’s that kind of impulsive decision made during youth that prompted Monday’s report by the American Academy of Pediatrics, which suggested that pediatricians counsel adolescents to think carefully before getting a tattoo because removal is difficult, expensive and only partially effective.
“Teens tend to overestimate the ease and ability to remove a tattoo, and they underestimate the cost,” said Corinn Cross, a pediatrician in Hollywood and spokeswoman for the American Academy of Pediatrics.
According to the AAP, the complication rate is likely low but does include bleeding, scarring and infection.
The organization suggested going to a tattoo parlor that is as clean as a dentist’s office. The artist should be using disposable gloves, new, sterile needles and fresh, unused ink.
Other advice includes making sure the tattoo shop is regulated by the state, and your immunizations are up to date.
“A place that is willing to tattoo a child or minor without getting consent is not a reputable place,” Cross explained.
It can take four to 20 treatments to remove a tattoo, and it’s often incomplete, according to dermatologist Eric Schweiger.
“I would say take a six-month waiting period before you get that tattoo to make sure you really want it,” Schweiger suggested.
But is that realistic?
“I think we can try to get the message across. If you still want it, really be careful on where you put on your body and select the right tattoo parlor that’s hygienic to prevent a chance from getting an infection,” Schweiger advised.