Despite a new report warning that skin cancer is on the rise, young people continue to seek out tans outdoors and in indoor tanning beds.
According to new research released by the Mayo Clinic last month, between 1970 and 2009, the rate of melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, increased eight-fold among women and quadrupled among men. Yet, two new government studies have found that teens are are still putting themselves at risk for skin cancer by getting sunburned and going to indoor tanning beds.
One study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that half of those aged 18 to 29 reported having at least one sunburn it the past year. One sunburn? Not too bad, right? But what is disturbing is the number of teens still seeking out a tan in indoor tanning beds. A study by the National Cancer Institute found 32 percent of those 18 to 21 were going to indoor tanning salons. Thirty percent of 22 to 25 olds visit them as well. The risks of getting melanoma increase by 75 percent when those 35 and younger are exposed to ultraviolet radiation from indoor tanning equipment.
Seventy-five percent! That's a huge risk! Do teens today really understand the risk they are taking to get tanned?
Dr. Marcus Plescia, director of CDC’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, commented in a statement, “We must accelerate our efforts to educate young adults about the dangers of indoor tanning to prevent melanoma as this generation ages.”
Need a mental image to remind you to put on sunscreen and seek out the shade? Here you go...