As winter gets into full swing, many people are turning to tanning beds to maintain their “summer glow”.
Although we at UV Skinz never recommend tanning of any kind, tanning beds are especially frowned upon, mainly due to the general misconception of how they affect your health.
Here are five facts about tanning beds which we hope will make you never use one again:
Fact 1: Tanning beds are not a safe form of tanning
You may have heard that using a tanning bed is a safer form of tanning then laying out under the sun. This is simply not true. Using a tanning bed just once can drastically increase your risk of getting almost every type of skin cancer, including life threatening melanoma.
Fact 2: Tanning beds can cause serious injuries.
Every year emergency rooms across the nation treat people who have been seriously injured while using a tanning bed. Common injuries consist of major burns, loss of consciousness, and serious eye injuries and damage.
Fact 3: Tanning beds provide very little, if any vitamin D to your body.
People often use tanning beds during the winter in an attempt to get more vitamin D in the absence of a hot summer sun. Not only is seeking out more vitamin D in the winter unnecessary in general, tanning beds are not a good source of it to begin with.
In order for our bodies to produce vitamin D from the sun, we need to be exposed to UVB radiation. Almost all tanning bed bulbs only emit UVA rays which damage the skin and provide virtually no vitamin D.
Fact 4: Getting a base tan from a tanning bed doesn't protect your skin or prevent future burns.
Many believe that once they have a base tan, they are safe from the dangers the sun can cause. This is far from true. You can still get painful and damaging sun burns no matter how tan you are. Additionally, any unnatural tan is the sign of the DNA in your skin being damaged. The more damaged your DNA is, the more likely it is to mutate and cause cancer.
Fact 5: Tanning bed addiction is real.
As absurd as it may sound, it is very possible to become addicted to tanning. Recent studies show that around 20% of 18 to 30 year old Caucasian women who use tanning beds so signs of addiction and have symptoms similar to substance withdrawal when they are not able to tan.
Bonus Fact: It's completely possible to stay tan over the winter without the use of a tanning bed or the sun.
If you must maintain a “summer glow” over the winter months, use a spray tan or self-tanner. Your skin, body, and loved ones will thank you for it down the road.