Earlier this week, cancer experts concluded tanning beds are as deadly as arsenic or mustard gas, and said people who begin using the ultraviolet radiation beds before age 30 up their skin cancer risk by 75 percent. After analyzing about 20 studies, scientists moved tanning beds and other forms of ultraviolet radiation from their list of probable carcinogens to the top risk category of “definite causes of cancer.”
When I was a teenager, several of my friends regularly used tanning beds to jump-start or extend tans they achieved from lying out in the summer sun. My skin is so fair that I simply burn and peel without zinc oxide or a minimum of SPF 50. Any color I may have is simply the explosion of freckles brought out by the sun. Like an impressionist painting, I may appear a little darker from a distance, but up close, my “tan” is really just a bunch of dots. Even so, I remember being tempted to try to get a deep tan like my friends.
I never did use a tanning bed back in the