All tattoos heal at different rates. If your tattoo is still itchy after a year, you might want to seek medical help for it. Most tattoos heal within a few days. Slapping the tattoo will provide some relief but there are other, better and more effective remedies and anti itch cream for tattoos which you can use to stop the discomfort and prevent yourself from scratching it.
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1. Give it time
Itchy tattoo after a year?
Itchy tattoo after 2 weeks!
Large tattoos take up a longer time to heal. Some tattooists also have a heavy hand and they could have laid more pressure while tattooing. All these factors tend to make a difference in the healing time of tattoos. For new tattoos that itch unbearably, you can take some Benadryl for itchy tattoo. Do not drive or operate machinery as this medicine is known to cause drowsiness. Tattoo itchiness will usually subside in a day or two. Continue to apply moisturizer with petroleum jelly to prevent skin dryness that causes itchiness.
2. Reaction to the weather or something you ate
Old tattoos often itch when the weather is hot and humid or in winters when it gets very cold. Likewise, some tattoos itch even after a year due to something one ate. It is just the flare up of allergies that cause the itch since the tattooed skin tends to become a bit susceptible. So in case you are wondering why does my tattoo itch so bad, this could be the answer.
3. Ice pack
Applying an ice pack is the best way to treat an old tattoo itching. Ice the skin for 10-20 minutes or as required. Repeat several times a day.
4. Take antihistamine
Antihistamines help prevent itchiness, swelling and redness in new and old tattoos. Take some Benadryl or other allergy medicine for quick relief from the itch.
5. Anti itch cream
The best anti itch cream for itchy tattoo is one that contains corticosteroid ( OTC 1%hydrocortisone). Apply the cream all over the tattoo and, if needed, cover it with a loose gauze or bandage. Do not use steroid based creams for more than 3 days. If you tattoo continues to itch, or has changed color, has become darker or starts bleeding, seek medical help. If there is an infection, you might need antibiotics to handle it.
6. Gold Bond lotion
Gold Bond lotion is another soothing, itch relieving remedy for itchy tattoos. Apply the lotion all over the design and repeat as often as needed.
7. Aloe vera
Cut up a leaf of aloe plant and extract its gel. Apply the sticky gel on the new or old itchy tattoo. This is a natural remedy to treat tattoo itching and swelling. Aloe soothes the skin and its antibacterial and antiseptic properties prevent infection.
8. Keep the tattoo clean
In case of new tattoos, make sure you keep the skin clean. Use antibacterial soap to wash the skin. Always wash your hands before touching the tattoo. Do not let clothing touch the newly pierced skin. Avoid tight clothing as far as possible. Make sure that you bedding is clean too. Do not let pets come in contact with the skin. Check out our tattoo-after care guide for more home remedies.
9. Trim fingernails
In case you end up scratching the skin in your sleep; it is a good idea to trim your fingernails to prevent secondary skin infection in the tattoo.
10. Use petroleum jelly on peeling skin
Tattooed skin will start to peel a few days after you get inked. This is completely normal and part of the healing process. Apply petroleum jelly all over the scabs to keep it moisturized. Moisturizing the skin will help prevent dryness and itch.
11. Oatmeal bath
Add some colloidal oatmeal to your bathwater and soak in it to prevent itchiness. Aveeno® oatmeal products are also great.
12. Baking soda and vinegar
Make a paste of ½ a cup of baking soda with a cup of white vinegar and two capfuls of Alpha Keri bath oil. Add the mixture to bath water and soak in it for 15 to 20 minutes. This will relieve itch and soothe the tattoo.
There is no definite answer to how long will my tattoo itch. Use these 12 tried and tested home remedies for new and old tattoo itching to get relief.