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Tanning Beds, Sunbeds and Skin Cancer – Proven Deadly

Tanning Beds, Sunbeds and Skin Cancer – Proven Deadly

Everyone likes seeing nicely tanned skin as it promotes a healthy athletic look. With increased public education, skin cancer awareness has improved over the last several years, and more people are routinely using high SPF sun block. While this practice is a great step in the right direction for sun worshipers, the medical community views artificial tanning as an even greater problem that sunbathing. Recent review of results from over 20 major studies of tanning bed usage, prompted international cancer experts to classify the use of tanning beds as a top cancer risk. They state that the mortality rate is comparable to that of arsenic and mustard gas exposure.

Raw data from a single study is sometimes hard to interpret as it may contain too many variables to really reach a concrete conclusion. However, the collective data of the 20 studies show a frightening trend: The risk of skin cancer increases by twenty fold, in patients under the age of thirty, that use tanning beds. In addition, they found that all types of UV radiation are carcinogenic, as opposed to just one type as previously thought. Tanning beds, which produce ultraviolet radiation and not any other colors of the spectrum, are now definitively linked to skin and eye cancer.

Opponents of the study still maintain that there is no definite link between “responsible use of sunbeds and skin cancer” and that many users only use these sunbeds about 20 times per year. (That sounds like the same old rhetoric the tobacco companies used to say!)

The fact is however, the popularity of tanning salons has increased over the past decade. Coupled with that is the fact that the increased frequency of use by patrons under 30 years of age, matches the increase in new cases of young people with skin cancer. For example, in England, melanoma, the deadliest flavor of skin cancer, is now the leading cancer diagnosed in women in their 20s. A decade ago, skin cancer was found most often in seniors over 75! Past studies have documented 8 times increased risk of developing melanoma if you use a tanning bed.

Here’s the bottom line, vanity isn’t worth dying for. Consider stopping the “Fake Bake” and maybe try some bronzing lotion. Besides, some of us like looking at creamy complexion of Snow White just as much as we like ogling at the bronze goddesses! Be yourself, and comfortable in your own skin!

Richard Fan is a practicing emergency/trauma physician assistant in a busy Southern California ER, and an medical officer on the national disaster response team, DMAT CA-1. Routinely treating victims of assault, rape, and robbery, he has developed a passion and expertise in Personal Safety Thru Smart Technology.

Tanning Beds, Sunbeds and Skin Cancer – Proven Deadly

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