Thursday, July 30, 2009

Cancer in a Box

I've been following the latest news on the findings reported in this article about tanning beds. From the article:

"A new analysis of about 20 studies concludes the risk of skin cancer jumps by 75 percent when people start using tanning beds before age 30. Experts also found that all types of ultraviolet radiation caused worrying mutations in mice, proof the radiation is carcinogenic."

They equate going to the tanning bed as being as likely to cause cancer as tobacco, hepatitis B, and chimney sweeping (I know I avoid all three - especially the last.. I mean who wants to get that dirty?). There is also a previous study that found that young people are eight times as likely to get melanoma than someone who had never been in a tanning bed.

I know a lot of people who used to go to the tanning beds... these days, most of my friends don't do it anymore (I guess it isn't "cool" anymore). However, I know that many people go to the tanning bed on a weekly basis, if not every other day. I've heard people say "it is worth the risk for skin cancer" since they look skinnier when tan - that or the old favorite "it can't happen to me." Is it worth your life to look tan?

Along the same lines, the article brings up the question in my mind - what is the difference in going in a tanning bed for 10 minutes and laying out by the pool for 4 hours? You're still talking about UV rays. I love laying out - the sun energizes me and I feel better. However, I've started moving from the SPF15 to the SPF30 as I get older and wiser (and start listening to my mom a little more). While I know that I look better "sunkissed," I don't want to put myself at risk any more than I already do.

After all, I drink bottled water that has been left in the sun, I eat food out of microwaved plastic containers, I eat red meat, I wear deodorant, I talk on my cell phone - I have to balance out the odds some how.

No comments:


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Site Design By Designer Blogs