Dangers of Tanning: American Academy of Dermatology

The Dangers of Tanning: American Academy of Dermatology

Whether your skin needs medical, surgical or cosmetic treatment, trust the expert care of a board-certified dermatologist.

The Dangers of Tanning:

All Tanning is dangerous:

The sun, tanning beds and sun lamps expose us to ultraviolent (UV) radiation. This radiation is so dangerous that the United States Department of Health and Human Services has declared UV radiation from the sun and artificial light sources, such as tanning beds and sun lamps, as a known carcinogen (tends to cause cancer). We know that UV radiation can cause skin cancer, the most common cancer in the world. It can prematurely age our skin, giving us a wrinkled and leathery look.

Getting Vitamin D from the sun or tanning beds is risky:

Some people seek the sun to get their daily dose of vitamin D. While we need vitamin D for healthy bones, the American Academy of Dermatology does not recommend getting vitamin D from the sun or tanning beds. Doing so increases our risk of getting skin cancer. Healthier ways to get this important nutrient are to eat foods rich in vitamin D and take a supplement.

Indoor Tanning causes skin cancer:

Indoor tanning beds or lamps are not a safe option to sun exposure. Like the sun, tanning beds and sun lamps expose us to two types of UV radiation. The UVA rays penetrate more deeply into our skin and speed up the aging of our skin. The UVB rays do not go as deep, but they do cause burns. Yes, burns can and do happen in some people who use indoor tanning. Some burns require a trip to the emergency room.

Some tanning lamps emit UV radiation many times stronger than that of the sun. Studies show that indoor tanning raises the risk of melanoma by 75% and increases the chance of getting other types of skin cancer.

Skin Cancer can be cured:

When melanoma, a type of skin cancer, is found early and treated, the patient can be cured. But, melanoma can be fatal. In the United States, the number of melanoma cases is rising. Other types of skin cancer may not be fatal but can invade and destroy surrounding tissue, causing disfigurement and sometimes tissue, causing disfigurement and sometimes painful reconstructive surgery.

Tanning ages skin:

It can take many years to see the effects of UV radiation on our skin. Skin cancer and signs of premature skin aging tend to show up years after we begin tanning. As such, young people are often unaware of the dangers of tanning. The number of cases of skin cancer likely keep rising as people who are tanning in their teens and 20’s reach middle age.

Signs of premature aging of the skin, such as wrinkles and age spots, eventually appear in everyone who repeatedly tans. These signs may be less apparent and take longer to show up in some people. This does not minimize the risk. People who tan greatly raise their risk of getting skin cancer.

Find you skin type:

Anyone can get skin cancer. People with skin types I, II, and III have the greatest risk of sun damage and skin cancer. Use the following table to find out what your risk is:

Skin Type I: Skin Color

Pale White Skin

Response to UV Exposure

Always burns; may freckle but never


Skin Type II: Skin Color

Fair skin and light-colored eyes, may have freckles

Response to UV Exposure

Burns easily, tans just a little


Skin Type III: Skin Color

White (Average)

Response to UV Exposure

Burns somewhat; tans gradually to light brown


Skin Type IV: Skin Color

Beige or light brown skin: hair and eyes usually brown

Response to UV Exposure

Burns just a little: always tans to fairly brown


Skin Type V: Skin Color

Moderate brown skin, usually of African or West Indian descent

Response to UV Exposure

Rarely burns: tans profusely to dark


Skin Type VI: Skin Color

Dark Brown to Black

Response to UV Exposure

Never Burns: tans profusely to dark

Tips to avoid sun damage:

*Plan your outdoor activities to limit your exposure to the sun’s strongest rays. As a rule, seek shade between 10:00am and 4:00pm.

*Wear protective clothing such as broad-trimmed hats, long pants and long-sleeved shirts to protect your skin.

*Wear sunglasses that provide 100% UV ray protection.

*When outdoors, always wear generous amounts of a sunscreen that is broad-spectrum (Protects against both UVA and UVB) and has a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or more. Apply the sunscreen at least 15 minutes before sun exposure and re-apply about every 2 hours.

*To cover the entire body, use palm full of sunscreen.

Facts you should know:

*If you notice an unusual or changing mole, a scaly patch or a sore that does not heal, make an appointment to see a dermatologist. This may be a sign of skin cancer or a spot that could become a skin cancer.

*If you severe itching or rashes in the sun, this is likely an allergic reaction.

A dermatologist is a medical doctor who specializes in treating the medical, surgical and cosmetic conditions of the skin, hair and nails. To learn more about the dangers of tanning, visit http://www.aad.org or call toll-free (888) 462-DERM (3376) to find a dermatologist in your area.

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the American Academy of Dermatology and was solely developed for it. From the 2011 American Academy of Dermatology.

American Academy of Dermatology

P.O. Box 4014

Schaumburg, IL  60168-4014

AAD Public Information Center: (888) 462-DERM (3376)

AAD Member Resource Center: (888) 503-SKIN (7546)

Web: http://www.aad.org




About jwatrel

I am a free-lance writer and Blogger. I am the author of the book "Firehouse 101" (IUniverse.com 2005) part of trilogy of books centered in New York City. My next book "Love Triangles" is finished being edited and should be ready for release in the Fall. My latest book, "Dinner at Midnight", a thriller is on its last chapter. My long awaited book explains the loss of the 2004 Yankee game to Boston. I work as a Consultant, Adjunct College Professor, Volunteer Fireman and Ambulance member and Blogger. I have a blog site for caregivers called 'bergencountycaregiver', a step by step survival guide to all you wonderful folks taking care of your loved ones, a walking project to walk every block, both sides, of the island of Manhattan "MywalkinManhattan" and discuss what I see and find on the streets of New York and three sites to accompany it. One is an arts site called "Visiting a Museum", where I showcase small museums, historical sites and parks that are off the beaten track both in Manhattan and outside the city to cross reference with "MywalkinManhattan" blog site. Another is "DiningonaShoeStringNYC", featuring small restaurants I have found on my travels in this project, that offer wonderful meals for $10.00 and under. So be on the lookout for updates on all three sites and enjoy 'MywalkinManhattan'. The third is my latest site, "LittleShoponMainStreet", which showcases all the unique and independent shops that I have found on my travels throughout and around Manhattan. I have started two new blog sites for the fire department, one "EngineOneHasbrouck HeightsFireDepartmentnj" for the Hasbrouck Heights Fire Department to discuss what our Engine Company is doing and the other is "BergenCountyFireman'sHomeAssociation" for the Bergen County Fireman's Association, which fire fighters from Bergen County, NJ, go to the Fireman's Home in Boonton, NJ to bring entertainment and cheer to our fellow brother fire fighters quarterly.
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1 Response to Dangers of Tanning: American Academy of Dermatology

  1. jwatrel says:

    Please call the above number for more information.

    Liked by 1 person

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