A study by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Cancer Research published in the July issue of The Lancet medical journal gives us even more reason to stay away from tanning beds. The Agency rates these artificial sun machines a category one carcinogen.
The following are 10 things you may not know about tanning beds:
1. Tanning beds are as carcinogenic as asbestos and arsenic
2. According to the Canadian Cancer Society, 50,000 young people use tanning beds
3. The risk of cancer increases by 75% for users under 30.
4. Ultraviolet radiation emitted by the beds causes skin and eye cancer.
5. Premature aging, wrinkles, sunspots and loss of skin elasticity results from UVA or bronzing light which is 3 to 8 times greater in a tanning bed than from the sun.
6. Although not common, you can catch crabs, warts and or molluscums from tanning beds.
7. Exposure to UV from these machines weakens your immune system.
8. New Brunswick has already banned minors from using tanning salons and 29 American states have restrictions for minors.
9. For those using sunbeds to get a base tan in order to avoid burning prior to a sun destination, this so-called protective measure is the equivalent to an SPF 4 sunscreen according to the Canadian Cancer Society. In other words, base tans are balderdash.
10. While tanning beds can help treat psoriasis, eczema and acne, the benefits of this are far outweighed by the risks. Light therapy for these conditions should be done only under the supervision of a dermatologist.