If you are planning on getting a tattoo, you know that the procedure is not going to be entirely pain-free and expect that fact. This is good because it will allow you to prepare for the pain ahead of time so that you can enjoy the experience of getting your tattoo, rather than suffer through it. Here are some tips for managing that pain.
1. Choose Areas That Aren't as Sensitive
If you aren't married to the idea of getting a large tattoo on your inner thigh, then avoid getting it there and put it somewhere that is less sensitive, such as on your back. Other places to avoid include areas where there is not a lot of fat or muscle between the skin and the bone. These places include the hands and the feet, the ribs, and the lower back. Putting a tattoo on your shoulder and upper arm is going to be less painful because there is a lot of muscle between the skin and the bone. Your inner thigh tends to be one of the more sensitive places in your body and if you have anywhere else that is particularly sensitive, avoid putting the tattoo there.
2. Take Preemptive Anti-Inflammatory Medication
If you are not currently taking blood-thinners, consider taking anti-inflammatory medication such as ibuprofen 45 minutes to an hour before you get your tattoo. This will allow the medication to kick in and reduce the amount of pain that you feel during the tattooing process. If the process is going to take more than four hours, take more medication at the four hour point to get continuous protection from pain.
3. Use Guided Meditation
While you are sitting in the tattoo parlor's chair, put in your headphones and listen to a guided meditation. This guided meditation will allow you to take yourself somewhere else in your mind, such as to a beach or to a peaceful cabin in the woods. This is important because it makes it easier for you to work through the pain in the moment and deal with it. Another option is to focus on your breath and do square breathing, which is when you breath out for four counts, hold for four counts, breath in for four counts, and hold for four counts. Your mind will be so focused on counting and breathing that it won't be able to register that you are in pain.
For more information, talk to a company that specializes in tattooing, such as The Ink Lab.