Common Indoor Tanning Myths Debunked

By on August 21, 2018 under Skin Cancer

Tanning beds have been a hot topic of discussion for a while now. While in the past they were once used liberally to create a quick tan, we now understand the dangers they can cause. Read on for some common tanning bed myths, debunked.

Myth: A base tan is needed before a vacation to prevent a bad burn

Truth: While this is a common misconception, there is no truth to it. There is little to no evidence to support this idea, and a few sessions of indoor tanning will not prevent you from burning in the sun. Plus, any type of suntan damages DNA in the skin cells, which can lead to long-term damage or cancer.

Myth: UV exposure is needed year-round to get enough vitamin D

Truth: UVA rays lead to tanning and skin aging. UVB rays are needed to interact with a protein in the skin to convert it into vitamin D. Because tanning beds mostly emit UVA rays, they won’t improve your vitamin D levels. Plus, most people get enough vitamin D from just a few minutes of sun exposure a day.

Myth: Tanning beds can improve your mood and treat seasonal affective disorder

Truth: While many individuals may say that they feel better when they tan, or that they like the way that being tan makes them look, the truth is, the good feelings that you get from tanning are not worth skin cancer. Instead, try getting outside in daylight, with sun protection, which is a proven mood booster. Also, for seasonal affective disorder, you can try using a “happy light,” which emits visible light you absorb through your eyes rather than harmful UV light on your skin.

Overall, indoor tanning is not a safe habit, as it can dramatically increase your chances of developing skin cancer, as well as speed up signs of aging. If you just can’t go without being tan, opt for other options such as self-tanners or spray tans.

If you are in the Farmington, MI area and are interested in learning more about indoor tanning, skin cancer, or our large array of services, contact our office today!