The Truth About Tanning THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A “SAFE TAN”
TANNED SKIN IS DAMAGED SKIN
Is tanning really dangerous? Any tan that comes from the sun or from a tanning bed is dangerous. Tanned skin is actually a result of damage to the skin cells. Too much ultraviolet (UV) exposure, either from the sun or from a tanning bed, is thought to cause as many as 90% of melanomas, the most serious form of skin cancer. Too much UV exposure can also lead to premature wrinkles and age spots. Yikes! Getting a “base tan” before prom or vacation provides you with almost no sun protection — the equivalent to about SPF 3. Tanned skin isn’t the same as healthy skin. In fact, just the opposite is true. Tanning to protect yourself from skin cancer is like smoking to protect yourself from lung cancer! Understanding the risks of too much UV exposure may help protect you and your loved ones from a skin cancer diagnosis. What if I just tan for prom or spring break?
Still not convinced? Just ONE blistering sunburn can double your chances of developing melanoma, and using tanning beds before age 30 increases your risk by a whopping 75%! Research suggests that the more UV exposure you get throughout your life, the higher your risk of developing melanoma and other types of skin cancer — so it’s never too late to stop tanning. Some countries, like Australia and Brazil, have completely outlawed tanning beds. Sadly, melanoma is the second most common form of cancer for young people 15–29 years old and the most common form of cancer for people 25–29 years old. It is also the leading cause of cancer death in women 25–30 years old. Melanoma is so dangerous because of its ability to spread throughout the body. Cancer is something “older” people get, right?
MELANOMA RESEARCH FOUNDATION 202.347.9675 www.melanoma.orgwww.melanoma.org
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