The Ugly Truth About Indoor Tanning May 1, Many people believe that using a tanning bed, booth, or sunlamp to get a tan is safer than tanning outside in the sun. But the truth is that just like sun tanning, indoor tanning also exposes skin to ultraviolet UV raysthe cause of most skin cancer.
Exposure to ultraviolet radiation UVR from the sun or from indoor tanning machines has been identified as the principal avoidable risk factor for the development of both melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancers NMSC.
While many report that the desire for a tanned appearance is the strongest motivation for sunbathing and tanning bed use,4 tanners also report mood enhancement, relaxation, and socialization. Common behaviors involved in abuse and addiction, like cigarette smoking and heavy drinking, are prevalent among adolescents and young adults.
They are often initially perceived as image-enhancing, and practiced despite knowledge of their dangers. Some of the reported benefits of frequent tanning — mood enhancement and relaxation — are also consistent with addiction.
Furthermore, many frequent tanners report difficulty quitting. What We Know about Tanning Addiction Frequent tanners exhibit signs of both physical and psychological dependence. When a substance causes physical dependency, repeated use of that substance causes symptoms of increased tolerance, craving, and withdrawal.
A study used naltrexone, a drug that blocks the endorphins produced in the skin while tanning, to induce symptoms of withdrawal in frequent tanners.
In this study, 50 percent of frequent tanners given naltrexone before UVR exposure exhibited withdrawal symptoms, including nausea and jitteriness.
These symptoms were not observed in any of the infrequent tanners given naltrexone in the study. Participants suggested that UV tanning created a more relaxed mood and even relieved pain, possibly due to endorphin release.
The production of sensations of pleasure or well-being encourages repeated use. Also supporting this idea of psychological dependence is a recent study in which 21 percent of 14—year-old indoor tanners reported difficulty quitting.
Quitting was most difficult for those who started tanning at age 13 or younger,10 and those who tanned more frequently. A version of it modified to measure tanning addiction includes four questions: Have you ever felt you needed to Cut down on your tanning?
Have people Annoyed you by criticizing your tanning? Have you ever felt Guilty about tanning? Have you ever felt you needed to tan first thing in the morning Eye-opener?
Many recent studies show that a number of frequent tanners score positive on the CAGE, meeting criteria for a UV light substance-related disorder. Preventing an addiction is far better than trying to treat one. Early primary prevention should include public education targeting young children, adolescents, their parents and caregivers.
Preventive behaviors learned early in life will more typically be practiced later in adulthood. Since tanning in childhood and adolescence is linked to more difficulty in quitting, banning indoor tanning in children may help prevent the habit from developing.
Thirty-one states currently have some form of legislation in place. Human behaviorists have developed the Stages of Change model, where the stage of addiction is first identified in order to find an intervention that will be most effective.
Future research on behavior change models will help us better target optimal interventions. In the meantime, simple measures can be effective.
For those who seek the golden look, self-tanning creams and sprays, which use non-UV chemicals to tint the skin, have never been associated with increased skin cancer risk.
For an endorphin boost which self-tanners do not supplyexercise could be a competing — and healthy — coping response. Finally, tanners should avoid high-risk relapse situations, such as tanning environments and associating with other tanners.
Of course, it always helps to solicit support from family and friends. Hornung works as a pediatric dermatologist at The Everett Clinic, a large, nationally recognized multispecialty clinic in Washing- ton.
Solmaz Poorsattar is a medical researcher with a special interest in the primary prevention of skin cancer and high-risk tanning behavior, and a doctoral candidate at the University of California - San Francisco School of Medicine.
Published on August 2, References 1.Tanning beds and lamps can expose you to even more harmful ultraviolet (UV) light than the sun does. And tanning products such as "self-tanners,"sunless sprays, and pills can expose you to additional risks, according to the U.S.
Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Tanning is an indication that your skin has been exposed to UV radiation; none of which is known to be safe. Ever since a tan was the sign of health and vitality, we have been battling the culture of society about the dangers of sun damage to our skin.
Pros And Cons Of Minimum Wage Essay. Pros and Cons of minimum wage The National minimum wage rate is currently £ for workers over The minimum wage was introduced in April and is the legal minimum that employers can pay for an employee. Tanning is your skin’s defense mechanism against the sun, and any change to your natural skin color is a sign of skin damage.
When exposed to moderate levels of radiation, a chemical reaction in your skin’s cell system occurs. One of the last pros of tanning salons is of course the all over tan that you receive. We live in a society where unfortunately many people put their health at risk to receive “beauty”.
By using tanning beds in their formative teen years, many people become addicted to tanning and show the same signs of dependence as with other addictive substances. Tanning early in life is a large indicator for continued use into adulthood and a steady increase in cancer risk.