Despite the warnings of respectable institutions such as the American Cancer Society, the Centers for Disease Control, and the Skin Cancer Foundation, many people insist on using tanning beds. Love Your Body Medical Spa wants you to love your body by avoiding tanning beds, and we want to provide you with five startling reasons why.
According to the American Cancer Society, young people in their teens and early twenties are especially at risk for developing melanoma, which is one of the deadliest cancers due to its ability to spread quickly to other parts of the body. When you use tanning beds regularly before the age of 30, you increase your risk of getting melanoma by 75%. Unfortunately, this age group is highly attracted to tanning. Young people often believe urban myths about tanning, such as that a base tan will protect the skin from the most harmful UV rays. A second urban myth regards the healthy tan, but there is no such thing as a “healthy tan.” Tanned skin is sun-damaged skin. Also, in no way is indoor tanning safer because the level of UV exposure is controlled. A high level of UV exposure is unsafe, whether indoors or outdoors. Make sure you understand the cancer risks before using a tanning bed to get ready for prom night, and make your grand appearance with a gorgeous gown instead of a dangerous tan.
In 2009, the World Health Organization moved the status of indoor tanning beds into a high cancer risk category, “carcinogenic to humans.” Such a warning is the same type of warning smokers see on packs of cigarettes, “Warning: Cigarettes Cause Cancer.”
Did you know that thousands of people visit the hospital yearly due to injuries caused by tanning beds? Skin burns are the most common injuries seen by hospital emergency room doctors, but cuts, fainting spells, eye damage, sprains and strains, dislocations, and bruising are common as well. Tanning beds are considered so unsafe that 11 states have banned indoor tanning for people under the age of 18. Eye damage caused by tanning beds include various types of eye inflammation and long term damage such as cataracts and squamous cell cancers.
German scientists have isolated yet another reason why using a tanning bed is harmful — warts. The human papillomavirus, which causes warts, is normally harmless. But, when you combine the virus with UVB rays, it can lead to the growth of cancers such as cervical cancer and skin cancer. How does that happen? The virus causes our normal genetic repair mechanisms to falter which leads to significant risk when the body is exposed repeatedly to UVB rays, as with regular use of a tanning bed.
Take a look around at women in their fifties and sixties who have very fair skin, light blonde or red hair, and who have stayed out of the sun. Generally, they have incredibly beautiful, radiant and youthful skin. The key to their success is avoiding UV (ultraviolet) light exposure by tanning outdoors or indoors in a tanning bed.
At Love Your Body Medical Spa, we want to keep you informed about what is healthy for your skin and your body. We hope that the above five reasons to avoid tanning beds will educate you as to why indoor tanning, is always a dangerous choice. Ask your skin specialist at Love Your Body Medical Spa for more information.