Am I addicted to tanning?
Love that ‘healthy’ glow that a tan gives you? Research proves that there is nothing healthy about that tan that looks so good. A recent study by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a branch of the World Health Organization (WHO), leaves no doubt about the dangers of tanning. People who first use sunbeds in their teens or twenties increase their risk of melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer by an astounding 75 percent! The study also shows youth who tan also increase their risk of squamous cell carcinoma, the second most common skin cancer. Other health problems associated with tanning include a decrease in the skin’s immune response, an increase in eye cataracts and cancers, and the premature aging of the skin. Skin aging caused by sun exposure or tanning beds can be seen in tanners in their 20’s, including wrinkles and age spots (dark patches of skin). According to Peter Boyle, MD, Director of the IARC, the study found no positive health effects from sunbed tanning, contradicting what the $5 billion tanning salon industry has used as its main selling point. Dr. Boyle recommends, and some communities are taking action, restricting access to tanning salons by minors and young adults. Take this quick assessment to learn more about the warning signs of tanning addiction and help you determine if you or someone you care about may be a tanning addict.