There are tattoos that can be a work of art. Some come with a special message. And now a new trend: tattoos that have the potential to save your life.
Jesse Carr has many tattoos, but he will never forget getting his first. It was prompted by a ski trip 12 years ago. "I went low," Car said. "I had low blood sugar so I don't really recall what I did. I was told I was acting really weird and didn't really know what I was doing or have any coordination."
Carr ended up having a seizure and waking up in the hospital. Now in big, black letters on his wrist is this word --- DIABETIC. A tattoo in place of his traditional Medic Alert bracelet.
"It feels a bit safer knowing that it's always there," Car said. "Having it done when I was 18, I wish I would have chosen a different design, but it is what it is. It's there forever."
Brian Syvret owns a tattoo shop. He says more people are starting to choose ink over metal. That's inspired him to take the process one step further. He's tattooing codes that can be scanned with a smartphone.
"Something about the bracelets it's something that if there is an accident where it could be lost, it could be broken off and if they don't have that information they don't know and if they go to treat something, something horrible could happen, where this, it's on you."
Syvret says the codes could hold a person's medical information, allergies and even emergency contacts. But paramedics are skeptical. They say medical alert bracelets have a registered system while with tattoos there isn't a standard symbol paramedics can recognize right away.
"With tattoos they're a lot more prevalent in today's society and another tattoo on someone's arm or some place, it may get missed by the health care providers," said Gord Bellavance with Regina Emergency Services.
Bellavance says if paramedics see a tattoo with someone's medical information they won't ignore it.
And for Carr, who knows when an alert could save his life. Having a bracelet that won't come off means permanent peace of mind.