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How Tattoos Can Help Your Mental Health

By Brandi Goodman 

Tattoos may have once been taboo for a lot of people, but their continued use has become more mainstream. They're far more than an act of self-expression and a way to put artwork you like on display. They can actually prove beneficial for your mental health depending on your reason for getting one and the time you choose to do so. 

A Process of Reflection

For some, sitting in that chair and watching the needle mark your skin can be a time of deep reflection. Many who choose a tattoo with meaning -- whether it's for memorial purposes or after a hardship or tough time -- reflect upon their reasoning for the entire duration. As you sit and watch your piece come to life, you may be thinking about the difficult time you went through or who you lost. This reflection can help to unburden your mind and help you heal. 

Ink Therapy

The term "ink therapy" has been coined for a reason. People often use tattoos as reminders of their strength, their resiliency, and the fact they're alive. You may have been abused, harmed, or hurt in one way or another. Getting a certain symbol or phrase tattooed on you can be a daily reminder that you're alive and thriving. For example, many people have started getting a semicolon tattoo that represents life after a suicide attempt and the fact that you're still alive and doing your best. Your story continues.

On the other hand, even sitting down for a silly tattoo you simply find funny can help. When you find it hard to focus and life feels overwhelming, getting any kind of tattoo and feeling the pain from the needle can help to focus your mind on one thing. Many of your other worries melt away in the process. It's a great stress reliever. 

Memorial Tattoos

Sometimes, we lose the people we love. It's a part of life, and yet knowing that fact doesn't make it hurt any less when it happens. Lots of people go through tremendous grief when they lose someone -- especially when that person died unexpectedly. Getting a memorial tattoo can be a way to cope with the loss and continue to honor that person's memory and time on this earth. 

July 17th has actually been dubbed "Tattoo Day." Make your tattoo plans now and get some ink therapy for the occasion. You can use tattoos as a mental health tool whenever you have the time and money to do so. It's a great way for a lot of people to express their feelings, get away from the world for a while, and help cope with so much of what goes on in life. If you don't agree, you can always get a drawing made instead. You can frame your picture or painting instead of wearing it on your skin. The sentiment remains.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in St. Petersburg, Fla.

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