While tattooing various body parts such as your arm or legs have become widely popular nowadays. The news that tattooing your eyeball has gained in popularity will be received with a muffled scream by those of us who are afraid of eye drops.
While tattooing other portions of our bodies has become commonplace, such as our legs, arms, and backs, eyeball tattoos are still rather unusual.
Eye tattoos are permanent colors injected into the sclera, the white area of the eye. Scleral tattoos are another term for them.
If the thought of getting ink in your eye makes you squirm, it’s for good reason: getting an eyeball tattoo is a perilous business.
Scleral tattoos are a newcomer to the body modification market, despite the fact that people have been tattooing their skin for thousands of years. In 2007, the first known scleral tattoo was performed.
The first corneal tattoo, on the other hand, was most likely done some 1,900 years ago by the renowned Roman physician Galen of Pergamon. Galen, on the other hand, did not use his tattoo for artistic motives.
He utilized it to conceal a white scar on an otherwise translucent cornea (leucomata).
Today, a laser-assisted variant of Galen’s treatment is available, but it’s only recommended for those who have specific, unusual illnesses.
Scleral tattoos, on the other hand, aren’t utilized to treat any illnesses. They’re virtually always “for show,” and they’re rarely — if ever — worth the danger.
Is It Even possible To Tattoo Your Eye?
The conjunctiva is a paper-thin membrane that covers the white sclera. When someone has pink eye or severe allergies, this layer becomes inflamed and bloodshot.
Scleral tattoos are created by injecting ink beneath the conjunctiva and onto the sclera’s surface.
Although eye tattoos appear to be straightforward, they have not been medically investigated or tested, and various things can go wrong.
The Dangers and Risks Involved With Eye Tattoos
A tattoo on your eye differs significantly from one on your skin.
The surface of the eye is exceedingly delicate, unlike skin, which is thicker and less sensitive than eye tissue. Skin tattoos, on the other hand, are a safer option.
How They Work
Scleral tattooing involves injecting ink below a mucous membrane (conjunctiva) and allowing it to spread across the sclera below, whereas traditional tattoos use tiny needles to carefully inject ink just below the upper layer of skin and “draw” it onto precise spots, scleral tattooing involves injecting ink below a mucous membrane (conjunctiva) and allowing it to spread across the sclera below.
Because there is no formal training or certification process for performing eye tattoos, issues might emerge for a variety of reasons.
Tattoo artists may, for example, employ incorrect ink or inject the ink too far into the sclera.
In certain situations, ink has passed through the eye’s surface and into the eye itself. When ink goes inside your eye or travels too far beyond the intended location, it can cause serious complications.
Blindness and vision loss are two of the most serious dangers, but they’re far from the only ones.
Some Other Dangers Involved With Eye Tattoo
The following are some of the other dangers linked with eyeball tattoos:
Pain and inflammation that is persistent and often severe.
Infections of the eyes.
You have the constant sensation that something is trapped in your eye.
Sensitivity to light.
Detachment of the retina, which can result in visual loss or blindness.
The damaged eye is completely blind (s).
Of course, there are numerous hazards linked with body mod ink, just as there are with any procedure or therapy involving the eyes.
Canadian Model Cat Gallinger Case
The instance of Canadian model Cat Gallinger, who received a sclera tattoo in 2017 to paint the whites of her eyes purple, is an example of eye tattoos gone awry.
She noticed that one of her eyes was seeping purple liquid after the treatment was completed. Gallinger sought medical help despite her belief that the reaction was natural.
After checking into a hospital, the model stated she experienced swelling of the eyes and blurred vision, according to an interview with The Sun.
Gallinger’s eyesight would not repair even after taking medicine for several weeks, and she would go blind without surgery, according to medical personnel, who reasoned that the tattoo procedure had ripped her sclera.
Gallinger wrote in a now-viral Facebook post about her tattoo, “This was caused by undiluted ink, over injection, not enough/smaller injections sites.”
“I am NOT posting this with you to cause trouble; I am sharing this to warn you to research who you have your operations from as well as how the procedure should be properly done.”
The model then revealed she had hazy and double vision in another post approximately a month later.
Gallinger’s case may have had an unusual conclusion, but her results pose a serious danger to others considering a sclera tattoo.
Andrea Tooley, MD, clinical spokesman for the American Academy of Ophthalmology, states, “Ophthalmologists have treated people who have experienced severe effects.”
“Injecting ink into the eyeball is a risky procedure… because the eye is such a delicate organ. To avoid injecting the ink within the eyeball, the needle must be inserted precisely under the conjunctiva (the transparent tissue covering the white area of the eye).
For anyone who isn’t a qualified surgeon, that’s a dangerous procedure.”
After a scleral tattoo, another man was in so much discomfort that he had to have his eye removed.
Eye tattooing also makes it very impossible for an eye doctor to examine the surface of your eye in the future, in addition to these concerns.
Once it’s Done, There’s No Going Back
Eye tattoos, as the name implies, are a controversial practice in which ink is injected directly into the eyeball.
This unique, often vibrantly colored ink is injected under the conjunctiva (aka the clear membrane on the front of your eye) and over the sclera (the whites of your eyes) to stain the area around the cornea a new color, also known as sclera tattoos.
People who have received this type of ink have effectively chemically “dyed” their eyes purple, blue, or yellow.
Who Invented Eye Tattoos and How Did They Come About
Celebrity body modifier Luna Cobra and the late Shannon Larratt, who produced the first significant body modification digital journal, developed the method over a decade ago.
The approach was refined throughout a two-year testing period, during which Cobra tested it on Larratt and other participants.
Body Modification Ezine published a record of the first three procedures as well as the history of the body modification in late 2007. (BME).
Larratt got the idea after observing a Dutch physician give his wife an eye implant, according to the article.
In principle, scleral tattooing is comparable to traditional tattooing; however, the ink is injected for aesthetic and cosmetic reasons rather than medicinal reasons.
Hundreds of body modification aficionados have benefited from Cobra’s sclera tattoos since its inception.
Sclera tattoos are a risky undertaking from the perspective of a tattoo artist. There is no formal training, licensing, or certification process for people who want to offer this sort of tattoo because it has not been medically or scientifically investigated in-depth (or at all) and because the practice was not established by a doctor.
Because of the tremendous need for precision, it might be difficult to find a skilled artist who is not just comfortable, but also an adept at injecting ink into the eye.
Even the sclera tattoo’s creator couldn’t help but mention the tattoo’s dangers in a 2012 post.
“Remember,” Larratt wrote, “if you are interested in eye tattoos, these are a high-risk procedure that should only be attempted by those with significant experience and training.”
It’s a sentiment shared by Dr. Tooley, who not only agrees but also advises anyone considering the procedure to keep in mind.
Finally, she strongly advises seeking for safer alternatives to ink in her expert opinion.
“I cannot emphasize this enough: Be kind to yourself and avoid the eye tattoo,” Dr. Tooley advises. If you’re dead set on getting an eye tattoo despite the obvious risks, Tooley recommends doing your homework.
“Before considering any cosmetic procedures or modifications to your eyes, make sure to speak with your ophthalmologist (a board-certified eye surgeon) about the safety and concerns regarding the procedure.”