Indoor tanning is prevalent in the United States. It is especially common among non-Hispanics, both men and women. They are easily enticed by its promise of beautifully bronzed bodies but are not informed of the dangers it can cause. This article will discuss three reasons why indoor tanning is harmful to you and your health.
1. Indoor tanning exposes you to harmful UV rays.
While some people would defend indoor tanning and say that it is way safer than sun tanning, studies have proven both are equally harmful to your skin. Both indoor and sun tanning exposes you to ultraviolet (UV) rays.
According to World Health Organization (WHO), small amounts of UV rays are good for our health, but prolonged exposure can be detrimental to the skin, eyes, and immune system.Previous studies already proved the link between the sun’s UV rays and skin cancer. Thus, you can also get skin cancer from indoor tanning.
2. Indoor tanning heavily damages your skin.
Indoor tanning customers mostly comprise of females and records show customers as young as high school girls. As many beauty salons offer this service, more and more people can obtain access to it. According to statistics, a number of minor females who do indoor tanning said they tried it because they were encouraged by their mothers.
Everyone, especially mothers, should know that indoor tanning makes the skin age faster by wrinkling and reducing elasticity. Prolonged exposure can cause allergic reactions to sensitive skin. It can also result in increased vulnerability to skin diseases by blocking the skin’s natural defences.
3. Indoor tanning increase your risk of getting cancer.
In 2009, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a branch of WHO, declared indoor tanning as “carcinogenic to humans.” It was finally categorized in the highest cancer risk stage when they found out it is linked to two types of cancer: squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma to the cancer of the eye also called “eye melanoma.”
The agency also found that people who did indoor tanning before reaching 35 years old have a 75 percent risk of getting skin cancer or melanoma. As a response, the IARC prohibited minors (children aged 18 and below) to undergo indoor tanning. Several states in the US followed and implemented the ban of minors from tanning salons.
The widespread use of indoor tanning results to more than 400,000 skin cancer cases every year—twice the number of cancer cases reportedly caused by cigarette smoking.