On Sunday, October 9, 2011, Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill making California the first state to prohibit minors from using tanning beds. This raises the question, should teens be able to decide whether or not to use tanning beds? According to Aim at Melanoma Foundation, using a tanning bed before the age of 20 doubles a person’s risk of developing melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. Even more staggering is that 28 million individuals in the U.S. use tanning beds each year despite the statistics, which includes 2.3 million teens.
Have you ever wondered why your loved one can’t get enough of the tanning bed? They are, after all, very health conscious, they don’t smoke, they exercise and eat an organic diet. Why then would they continue to use tanning beds knowing the potential risks? Science can shed some new light on the subject.
The incidence and prevention of skin cancers has become a global concern. The World Health Organization reports that prolonged human exposure to solar UV radiation may result in acute and chronic health effects of the skin, eyes and immune system, including skin cancer. This global epidemic has prompted the first International Conference on UV and Skin Cancer Prevention, jointly sponsored by the WHO, the Danish Cancer Society, TrygFonden and the Cancer Council Victoria.