According to the National Cancer Institute, over-exposure to the ultraviolet rays featured in cosmetic tanning appliances increases the risk of developing skin cancer from tanning booths.
Tanning booths, like the more popularly purchased tanning bed, is a device that emits ultraviolet rays in the hopes of achieving a cosmetic tan. The process typically takes between ten and fifteen minutes. Sporting a hefty price tag than the more economically priced tanning bed, tanning booths are designed for use standing up as opposed to lying down. Consumers overwhelmingly prefer tanning booths in comparison to tanning beds, typically for sanitation reasons. Different from a subbed, as tanning beds are sometimes called, tanning booths signature requirement for standing limits the amount of contact with the unit.
Many professional tanning salons elect the use of tanning booths when faced with the choice between booths and residential tanning beds-although no statistics are available on the fact. Tanning booths require a limited amount of space as a result of their structure. Many booths for tanning sport additional facilities designated for changing clothes-an amenity used to justify the higher cost of tanning booths.
The risk of developing skin cancer from tanning booths is just one of several health risk medically linked to cosmetic tanning devices, which is also connected to DNA alteration. Non-melanoma skin cancer is the most common form of the disease in the United States. Approximately one million people are diagnosed with the disease annually. Forty to fifty percent of Americans over sixty-five will battle skin cancer at least once. Women are more likely to develop skin cancer on their legs. Men are most likely to develop the disease on the back.
The medical community points to the fashion tanning process implemented by tanning booths as the health culprit. Tanning booths use various types of lamps in the tanning process, one hundred sixty watt very high output lamps are used, as well as standard one hundred watt high output lamps. Long-term exposure to ultraviolet lamps, like the ones used in tanning booths, can cause skin cancer by altering the structure of the DNA. In 2000, the American government’s National Institutes of Health released the tenth edition of it’s Report of Carcinogens. The agency listed solar radiation, artificial sources of ultraviolet rays, sun lamps, and tanning beds amongst it’s list of cancer-causing agents.