I’ve been saying this for years, and now the World Health Organization has issued a definitive statement: tanning booths cause skin cancer.
In the story from the CBC news website, the International Agency for Cancer Research or IARC, the World Health Organization’s cancer wing in Lyon, France, updated the cancer risk level from tanning beds, based on research published online Wednesday in the medical journal Lancet Oncology
Tanning beds and ultraviolet radiation cause cancer and have been moved up to the highest risk category by these international cancer experts. The new classification means tanning beds and UV exposure definitely causes cancer in humans, just as tobacco smoke, the hepatitis B virus, radon gas, plutonium and mustard gas do.
Experts upgraded the level after an analysis of about 20 studies concluded that the risk of skin melanoma is increased by 75 per cent when people started using tanning beds before age 30.
Previous studies found younger people who regularly use tanning beds are eight times more likely to get melanoma than people who have never used them.
WHO has warned people younger than 18 to avoid tanning beds. The Canadian Cancer Society has called for minors to be barred from using tanning beds, and the American Cancer Society advises people to try self-tanning creams instead of tanning beds.