Back during the summer of 2018, Post Malone got the infamous words "Always Tired," tattooed under his eyes. These tattoos caused quite a stir in Hollywood media and the tattoo industry, however, what is Posty was on to something? What if there's a connection between tattoos and sleep disorders?
Well, it turns out that their might be a link. According to a study published in the medical journal Pediatrics in 2017, "Individuals with tattoos were more likely to have sleep troubles than those without — 36.6 percent and 27.6 percent, respectively."
The study sought to examine the relationship between a person with tattoos and their health (overall health status, mental health diagnosis and sleep problems) as well as their involvement in perceived risky behaviors (smoking status, if they'd been to jail/prison and number of sexual partners).
From the study of 2,008 adults living in the United States, researchers found that 31% of their respondents had one or more tattoos. They found that 50% of the respondents had trouble sleeping and also noticed that of the respondents, with the authors writing, "Those with any (8.1 percentage points), one (8.9 percentage points), four or more (11.5 percentage points), and visible (10.5 percentage points) tattoos are more likely to have trouble sleeping than individuals without these tattoo characteristics."
In addition to the data suggesting that tattooed people were more likely to have trouble sleeping than non tattooed people, the authors also found that tattooed people were significantly more likely to engage in the aforementioned risky behaviors.
They found that current smokers were more likely to have at least one tattoo, writing "Respondents with any (13.9 percentage points), one (8.2 percentage points), two (11.7 percentage points), three (11.9 percentage points), four or more (22.4 percentage points), visible (12.2 percentage points), and offensive (24.1 percentage points) tattoos are more likely to report being a current smoker than individuals without these tattoo characteristics," in their analysis.
From this study, tattooed people who had spent time in jail or prison out numbered non tattooed people—concluding that "respondents with a tattoo are 11.9 percentage points more likely than those without a tattoo to have been arrested and spent time in jail or prison."
Lastly, the study also found that tattooed people had a higher number of sexual partners within the last twelve months—with an average of 1.5 partners and 1.1 partners respectively.
But what does this mean for tattooed and non tattooed people? Does having tattoos make a person more likely to smoke, have spent time in jail, have more sexual partners or more susceptible to trouble sleeping? Here's the thing, this study was conducted to examine tired and contrived stereotypes of tattooed people, which have existed in our culture for decades. And while many studies have been conducted in the past of tattooed individuals, they often didn't account for the growing.and diverse population of inked individuals that exist today. Therefore, this new study shouldn't be a fearsome warning not to get tattooed but instead a more inclusive and changing representation of tattooed people today—especially, when you consider that this is the first study to link tattoos to sleep disorders.
So of course, take this information with a grain of salt but remember that if done ethically, research can bring a greater level of acceptance and tolerance to communities that continue to face discrimination in the 21st century.
What do you think of this study and it's results? Do you have tattoos and experience trouble sleeping? Let us know your thoughts, opinions and questions on this story in the comments section on Facebook and Twitter.