Young adults would rather indulge in tanning today than worry about skin cancer tomorrow. Tanning is the norm in some circles. It’s expected. Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States, and melanoma is the most deadly type of skin cancer, but that’s not scaring young adults from the lure of the tanning booth.
Exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun and from indoor tanning equipment increase the risk of developing skin cancer. Engaging in indoor tanning before age 35 increases the risk of melanoma by 75 percent. Recent studies by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Cancer Institute found that:
“More public health efforts, including providing shade and sunscreen in recreational settings, are needed to raise awareness of the importance of sun protection and sunburn prevention to reduce the burden of skin cancer,” said Marcus Plescia, M.D., M.P.H., director of CDC’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control. “We must accelerate our efforts to educate young adults about the dangers of indoor tanning to prevent melanoma as this generation ages.”
The reports were published in CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
On a personal note, I’m not a “tanner” and I’ve not had skin cancer, but I have had cancer. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. It’s certainly not a good trade for tan skin — or red skin — or orange skin. It is an avoidable risk and one not worth taking. Oh, and if you’re concerned about your appearance, it is worth noting that over time, tanning gives your skin that nice wrinkled, leathery look…
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
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