Having a sexy, summer glow that comes from a little time spent in the sun can make you feel beautiful. We all feel the same. We also all know that it’s not good for us, but most of us are not aware of how severe the dangers of tanning have become. New studies indicate that it’s more important to stop now more than ever, whether it be naturally from the sun, or from a tanning bed. Scientists recommend avoiding tanning in any way, shape or form. We’re here to help unlock the truth about tanning beds.
A common reason that people “fake bake” is to get some color. In the US alone, 35 percent of adults and 55 percent of millennials have tanned in a tanning bed, according to a study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). According to this study, over 400,000 cases of skin cancer can be attributed to indoor tanning in the United States. They also concluded that tanning can be deadlier than smoking. In fact, one in five people who regularly tan in tanning beds develop cancer later, according to the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery.
Tanning Bed Truth #1:
Even One Sunburn Doubles Your Chances for Developing Skin Cancer
UV radiation induces degenerative changes in cells of the skin, fibrous tissue and blood vessels leading to premature skin aging, among other dangers. UV radiation can also weaken the immune system.
Tanning Bed Truth #2:
Indoor Tanning is Linked to Melanoma
The second most common cancer for women in their 20s and the third most common cancer for women in their 30s is melanoma. In fact, using tanning beds before the age of 30 increases your risk of developing melanoma by 75 percent, meaning it’s even more important to get regular skin checks if you’ve tanned in the past. The proof is in the numbers – While rates of indoor tanning have risen by 27% since the 1980s, the number of melanoma cases have increased by 50%, in the same time period.
Tanning Bed Truth #3:
Tanning Beds Aren’t Safer Than the Sun
The bulbs used in tanning equipment emit primarily ultraviolet-A (UVA) rays, which typically don’t cause the burning triggered by UVB rays, but these rays have been linked to skin cancer and wrinkles. Additionally, these bulbs are typically two to three times more intense than natural sunlight. At the end of the day, any amount of UV exposure raises your skin-cancer risk.
Tanning Bed Truth #4:
UV Exposure Can Cause Eye Damage
According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), “too much exposure to UV light raises the risks of eye diseases, including cataracts, growths on the eye and cancer.” A tanning bed’s UV levels are much stronger than the sun’s UV rays, which can cause serious damage to your eyes. While outdoors, ophthalmologists recommend wearing 99 percent and higher UV-absorbent sunglasses and a brimmed hat to protect your eyes.
The key to protecting your largest (and one of the most important) organs on your body is to use protection when enjoying the outdoors. And indoor tanning? A healthy glow that lasts for a few days is just not worth the damage that can be incurred from the UV rays your body absorbs in a tanning bed. Besides, self-tanners have been around long enough that the formulations can really mimic a fantastic natural glow without harm to your skin and make a tan available anytime.