Sunday, April 24, 2011

#56: Don't use a tanning bed!

This study has been getting a lot of press recently after a few provinces and states in the US are trying to impose an age limit on the use of tanning beds. According to the authors, using an indoor tanning bed before the age of 35 can increase your risk of getting melanoma up to 75%! Melanoma is not only the most common type of cancer, but it's also among the most preventable (source).

Studies are being done every year to reveal the carcinogens we're exposed to in our daily lives, but the case for tanning beds (or increased sun exposure in general) has come to a point where it's difficult to ignore. The tanning salon was never a favourite hang out of mine, but I did on occasion work on my base-tan or get myself some pre-summer colour. No more! I would be doing my chemotherapy-and-radiation-self a disservice by actively engaging in any activity that has proven to increase my risk of getting cancer (again).

My post-chemotherapy bash is planned for Florida in May, and I'm going to waltz onto that beach whiter than ever. I even plan to smear on the SPF 30 every day I'm on that beach, especially now that I've got a precious little niece I am required to role-model for.

Sure, it's going to be hard to pull that bikini over my pasty shoulders. But isn't that what tanning creams or spray tans are for?

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