The Tanning Study

Indoor tanning was the focus of a new study at bmj.com. The results, as you probably expected, are not good.

USC led the research and determined that indoor tanning is likely responsible for over 170,000 cases of non-melanoma related cancer in the United States alone.

There were actually 12 studies involved in the findings. USC Professor Elini Linos led the research, in which 9,328 cases of non-melanoma cancer were studied.

Among the primary contributing factors was exposure to indoor tanning at under 25 years of age. The research team noted that “this suggests a critical period for exposure during early life and a potential dose-response effect.”

How much does the risk increase for indoor tanning?

The study suggests that individuals tanning indoors are 67% more likely to develop squamous-cell carcinomas than those who have never tanned inside. They’re 29% more likely to develop basal-cell carcinomas.

Altogether, the study concludes that 5% of non-melanoma cancers are caused by tanning inside.  That may not seem like a huge number.. but if you’re in the 5% but that’s representative of thousands of people.

What Should We Do?

Perhaps California should get the obligatory pat on the back for leading the way in the US.  Last year, the state was the first to ban all indoor tanning by minors.

The country of Brazil has taken it to a much greater extreme and banned indoor tanning completely.

I doubt we’ll ever see that extreme taken in a country that’s so supportive of killing themselves in numerous unhealthy ways, but enforcing new tanning laws is certainly a good start.

So tan at your own risk. You now know the consequences.

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