Wednesday, 14 November 2012

The Ugly Truth of Tanning


     Now that summer is over and winter is rearing its chilly and sunless head, people all over the country will be opting to use tanning beds to recreate their summer glow.

    However, sun bed users need to be aware that indoor tanning causes over 170,000 cases of non-melanoma skin cancer in the U.S. every year, according to researchers at UC San Francisco.

    The study, conducted by medical students and professors, examined the danger of exposure to tanning beds during a person’s early life, amongst other hazards.

    Based upon data from three separate studies, using tanning beds before the age of 25 was strongly related to the development of squamous cell carcinoma, which is a type of skin cancer that usually occurs on the upper body, for example hands, face and neck.

Different types of skin cancer
     In fact, researchers found that tanning bed users are 67 percent more likely to develop squamous cell carcinoma and a further 29 percent are likely to develop basal cell carcinoma.

    Although these two types of cancers are non-malignant, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, they can grow quickly and spread to other parts of the body, such as internal organs and lymph nodes, where they can become fatal.

    Some local governments are jumping into the fray with legislation.

    Springfield, Illinois, is one of the latest cities to ban minors from using tanning beds. Owners of tanning beds that allow people under the age of 18 to use them will be fined up to $750, according to the State Journal Register.

    Many of these policies came into play after the media storm surrounding ‘Tanning Mom’ Patricia Krentcil. Krentcil was arrested and charged with second degree child endangerment when it was alleged she had been taking her 6-year-old daughter into tanning booths. 

'Tanning Mom' Patricia Krentcil and her daughter. Did she seriously not realise how ridiculous she looked?
   However, despite the renowned dangers and increased risk of developing cancer from tanning beds, according to an article in the New York Post, Krentcil insisted she is no different from any other mother, who enjoys simple life pleasures like nail polishing or food.

   And according to a report by the Skin Cancer Foundation, tanning has become an addiction to some people. The study cites that 70 percent of frequent UV tanners met criteria for UV light substance abuse, with many tanners missing events in order to tan instead. 

No-one wants to end up like this...

1 comment:

  1. I can't believe this last photo. What a knucklehead.