Thursday, March 10, 2011

Banning Tanning Beds for Teens

I didn't do a whole lot of tanning at a salon when I was a teenager, but I was a lifeguard in high school. I doubt that's any better. I wore sunscreen-sometimes. I think teens tend to think they're invincible so I can imagine they don't know or don't care about the effects of fake tanning. Skin cancer seems like something that happens to other people when you are a teenager. I remember...

FROM NBC: A new report from the American Academy of Pediatrics says not enough is being done to reduce the risk for skin cancer among children.
The group wants to ban teens from tanning salons. Tanning beds should be for adults only according to the nation's largest group of pediatricians. Around the country, there are more than a million visits a day to these salons.

Miami Children's Hospital dermatologist Dr. Ana Duarte agrees with a ban for minors. Dr. Ana Duarte/Dermatologist "First I think they're not aware of all the dangers that are involved with repeated tanning. there are certain dangers inherent in exposing yourself to ultraviolet radiation, there's an increased risk of skin cancer, primarily melanoma skin cancer."

Even in sunny south Florida, tanning salons are very popular and the state does have restrictions regarding minors. Florida's indoor tanning law says if you're under 14, a parent must be present. 14 to 18: parental permission is needed and eye protection is required.

Dr. Ana Duarte/Dermatologist: "If they make a decision as a family, understanding all of the risks ... that's up to the individual." Aimee Anillo is now a dermatology assistant but she used to work at a tanning salon in her teens and tried it.

Aimee Anillo/Dermatology Assistant "I was red, red, red. and so I'm like, 'I don't like this at all.' so I did that maybe twice and I've definitely seen the effects. I just had five different moles removed." The Indoor Tanning Association released a statement saying the decision about whether or not a teenager tans should be left up to the parents and points out it will only send determined minors -- outdoors.

-NewsAnchorMom Jen

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