We’ve heard them all. You’re going on a trip and want to develop a “base tan” to protect yourself against getting a sunburn. You have a party or a dance coming up and want to have a little bit of color of for the event. You “never” go to the tanning bed…only a few times a month.
For starters, there’s no such thing as a base tan. According to the Mayo Clinic, using a tanning bed before spending time in the sun on a trip is simply exposing you to more UV radiation. Every little bit of tan is proof of skin damage, and in turn increases your risk for developing skin cancer.
The American Academy of Dermatology (ADA) reports that Approximately 7.8 million adult women and 1.9 million adult men in the United States tan indoors. Research also indicates that more than half of indoor tanners (52.5 percent) start tanning before age 21, while nearly one-third (32.7 percent) start tanning before age 18. These statistics are quite alarming when you consider that one indoor tanning session can increase your risk of developing skin cancer (melanoma by 20%, squamous cell carcinoma by 67%, and basal cell carcinoma by 29%).
Did you know that as many as 90% of melanomas are estimated to be cause from UV exposure? Melanoma is the leading cause of cancer death in women 25-30 years old and the second leading cause of cancer death in women 30-35 years old. What’s even worse is that this that up to 90% of all cases of melanoma are considered to be preventable. 
There’s no such thing as a healthy tan. If you’re looking for alternatives, consider spray tanning. Unlike a tanning bed, spray tans utilize a mist and do not contribute to your risk of getting skin cancer. Sunless tanning is also available in different options, like lotions, that can be applied year-round at home.
If you have more questions about the dangers of indoor tanning, or how to best protect yourself from harmful UV rays please call us at 210-255-8447 to schedule an appointment today.