Tanning beds increase risk of skin cancer in youth, study finds – Daily Digest

People who begin using tanning beds at a young age are at an increased risk of developing skin cancer.

According to findings reported in “Early-Onset Basal Cell Carcinoma and Indoor Tanning: A Population-Based Study,” early exposure to the UV light from radiation lamps used in indoor tanning beds is linked to an increased risk of developing basal cell carcinoma (BCC) in youth.

The findings, which will be published in the July 2014 issue of the journal Pediatrics, suggest that attention needs to be focused on educating young people about the dangers associated with indoor tanning beds.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, more than one million people use tanning beds every day in the U.S. Of these, 59 percent are college students, and 17 percent are teenagers.

Lead study author Margaret Karagas, PhD, co-director of the Cancer Epidemiology and Chemopreventon Research Program at the Norris Cotton Cancer Center and Director of the Children’s Environmental Health and Disease Prevention Research Center at Dartmouth, is concerned about the susceptibility of young people to developing BCC due to exposure to tanning beds at such an early age.

“Our findings suggest that teens and young adults who seek indoor tanning may be especially vulnerable to developing BCC, the most common form of skin cancer, at a young age,” said Karagas in a statement.

The study’s researchers found that indoor tanning beds can produce 10 to 15 times as much exposure to ultraviolet radiation than that of the midday sun at its strongest.

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Tanning beds increase risk of skin cancer in youth, study finds – Daily Digest

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