Many young women remain unaware of the dangers of tanning beds, according to a survey by the American Academy of Dermatology.
More than 3,800 white, non-Hispanic females, aged 14 to 22 years, responded to the academy’s nationwide online survey, according to a press release. Conducted from Dec. 28, 2010 to Jan. 11, 2011 by Relevant Research of Chicago, the survey measured tanning knowledge, attitudes and behavior.
Among the indoor tanners surveyed, 43% reported they have never been warned about the dangers of tanning beds by salon employees and 30% were unaware of warning labels on tanning beds.
“Studies have found that [ultraviolet] radiation from indoor tanning beds increases a person’s risk of developing melanoma by 75 percent,” Ronald L. Moy, MD, FAAD, president of the academy, said in the release. “Contributing to this problem is the fact that tanning bed facilities currently are not required to verbally warn patrons of the known health risks of ultraviolet radiation”
“Our survey confirmed that age was highly associated with use of tanning beds, as respondents ages 18 to 29 years old were much more likely than those over age 30 to report using a tanning bed,” Amanda Friedrichs, MD, FAAD, a board-certified dermatologist, said. She recommended that young adults who seek tans should use self-tanners rather than expose themselves to harmful UV radiation.