Tanning Beds Are Not Skin Healthy And Can Cause Cancer

Tanning Bed
Advertisement

Top researchers in the fields of dermatology, melanoma and biology have issued a report that indoor tanning and tanning beds are equally unsafe for skin as ultraviolet radiation from the sun and may contribute to the marked increase in skin cancers. Scientists from the University of London and University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center carried out the research and have strongly urged people to stop self tanning.

More than 1 million cases of non-melanoma skin cancer and 60,000 cases of melanoma are diagnosed in the United States each year. Melanoma is the most common cancer of young people age 20-39 and the incidence of skin cancer is the fastest growing cancer worldwide.

The bronze glow of a tan is sought after and people have been misled into thinking that the tanning booth is a way to have golden sun-kissed skin without the danger. The Indoor Tanning Association has been saying that tanning booths supply needed Vitamin D and are safer than the sun. But the evidence is clear... "No Tan is a Safe Tan" and the artificial UV radiation from tanning booths has the same damaging effects as UV radiation from the sun.

Advertisement

Ultraviolet radiation causes irreversible damage to cellular DNA in the skin. Intermittent exposure and exposure during childhood and adolescence are important predictors for basal cell carcinoma and malignant melanoma. High levels of chronic exposure, such as working unprotected in the sun, is more often associated with squamous cell tumors.

The damaging effects of ultraviolet radiation accumulate over years and researchers are calling for a ban on tanning booths for people under age 18.

Everyone, especially children should be shielded from the sun by wearing hats and loose protective clothing. Sunscreens should be applied frequently when sports or other outdoor activities are played. For that bronze, healthy look, spray tans or tanning lotions can provide a safe tan.

Toni Brayer, MD

Advertisement

Comments

Well from a person who recently was diagnosed with malignant melanoma I know about the dangers of tanning beds and the sun. You should protect yourself. I promise having cancer isnt worth tanning.
You are quoted in this report that …”More than 1 million cases of non-melanoma skin cancer and 60,000 cases of melanoma are diagnosed in the United States each year. Melanoma is the most common cancer of young people age 20-39 and the incidence of skin cancer is the fastest growing cancer worldwide…The Indoor Tanning Association has been saying that tanning booths supply needed Vitamin D and are safer than the sun. But the evidence is clear... "No Tan is a Safe Tan" I would like to respond to your comments and offer the following: The Food and Drug Administration regulates the indoor tanning industry through 21 CFR 1040.20 and forbids health claims on sunbed and sunlamps. The Federal Trade Commission monitors such claims. Read more about the ITA at theita.com/indoor/faq.cfm I ‘m also sure that you are aware of the importance of vitamin D as well, but read more at http://www.vitamindsociety.org/ and http://www.uvadvantage.org/ The American Cancer Society offers statistics on cancer through the SEER report ( http://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/melan.html ) , but does not report statistics on non melanoma skin cancer. I have requested information from the American Cancer Society regarding NMSC reporting and received the following…"Thank you for your patience while our staff researched your question about why statistics about basal and squamous cell carcinoma are not included in the estimated new cases or deaths categories contained in the Society's publication "Cancer Facts & Figures 2005." After investigating your question, it was found that we do not report case numbers for basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers because the majority of patients are diagnosed and treated in doctor's offices as opposed to hospitals, and therefore incidence data is generally not reported". Perhaps you will address this in future comments and postings. Dr. Brayer, you also will find through SEER that the overwhelming majority of incidence (78%) and fatality (90%) from melanoma occurs to those above age 44. No doubt the result of years of unprotected overexposure resulting in erythema, the lack of public awareness, combined with heredity and nevi, all of which has been reported among the causes. Millions of people weight the benefits of UV exposure and choose the controlled environment of indoor tanning where a precise amount of UV is delivered via a timing system by skin type vs. the uncontrolled and varying degrees of overexposure that the sun offers, which most often results in erythema or sunburn. Regards, Joe Schuster SAE Media Liaison