OSEA Safety Blog

The Dangers of Indoor Tanning

Tuesday, August 27, 2019 Julia Costa

There are many people of all ages that use fake tanning methods year-round. Some may use spray tanning, others use the UV Beds, and still, many use different self-tanning lotions and creams. I’m focusing on the harms of indoor tanning on a bed with UV lights. Although this method keeps you looking tan and crispy, even during those long winter months, it can be extremely harmful to your health. 35% of American adults will use a tanning bed in their lifetime. Additionally, a huge 59% of college students have used or will use a tanning bed at some point in their life. I want to cover some of the risks that can come from indoor tanning methods in an attempt to educate on how dangerous it can be for you and your skin.

It has been found by the US Department of Health and Human Services that tanning beds are a known carcinogen. American Academy of Dermatology states, “Evidence from multiple studies has shown that exposure to UV radiation from indoor tanning devices is associated with an increased risk of melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancer, including squamous cell carcinoma and basal cell carcinoma.” The estimated cost of treating skin cancers that are due to indoor tanning beds is about $343.1 million a year. The expenses you’ll have to cover in the long term from treatment are not worth short-term having good color in the winter months. There are even some smaller symptoms that tanning in UV beds can cause. Some examples include premature skin aging, immune suppression, and eye damage.

These diseases can come not only from tanning beds, but from the sun itself, so any precautions you can take against sun damage is helpful. Sun screen, wearing hats, or bringing umbrellas with you to the beach are all small preventative actions you can take. And if you are in the sun for extended amounts of time or are very much set on fake tanning, keep an eye out for spots on your skin that weren’t there before. Be sure to get them checked if you do notice any to ensure you catch any threatening diseases before they increase in severity.



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