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Tanning Booths Finally Called What They Are: Carcinogens

By August 5, 2009

Finally, after years of research, indoor tanning has now been called what it is: a carcinogen. The International Agency for Research on Cancer, part of the World Health Organization, recently moved tanning beds to its highest cancer risk category -- the same category as tobacco, asbestos, arsenic and mustard gas!

In a review in the journal Lancet Oncology that led to the move, the authors concluded that the risk of melanoma increases by 75% when use of tanning beds and sunlamps begins before 30 years of age. In addition, several studies provided evidence of a link between the use of UV-emitting tanning devices and melanoma of the eye. Another key new study showed that a genetic mutation caused by UVA radiation (the kind emitted in tanning booths) led to tumors in laboratory mice.

I agree with Jeffrey Dover, MD, president-elect of the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery, who said: “Tanning beds have become a dangerous past time for the American public—especially with younger generations who don’t think skin cancer will affect them at such a young age." ASDS and other organizations support the 27 indoor tanning bills introduced this year that will prohibit teens younger than 18 years old from using tanning beds.

There is now no doubt that you should put a priority on your health over your vanity and avoid tanning salons!

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