Sunbeds as lethal as cigarettes & arsenic: Experts class tanning with smoking and asbestos as top cancer risks. This was the headline on a British newspaper & MSN.com yesterday and I thought this was news worth sharing, so below is the article reproduced from the Daily Mail: Sunbeds are as great a cancer threat as cigarettes, global health chiefs have declared. The dangers of ‘binge tanning’ are so significant that sunbeds have been placed on the World Health Organisation’s list of the most cancer-causing substances and habits, alongside arsenic and asbestos. Before this, sunbeds and sunlamps had been classified as ‘probably carcinogenic’, placing them one rung below the most dangerous products. High risk: Ultra-violet radiation could trigger cancer according to scientists. After reviewing the latest evidence, WHO scientists decided there was no doubt that ultra-violet radiation could trigger the disease.This means that sunbathing is also classified as high risk. But the intensity of the UV light emitted by sunbeds means a 20-minute visit to some booths is the equivalent to spending an entire day on the beach. The data will be made available to the Government, including the Department of Health which is facing increasing pressure to clamp down on sunbed use. Critics say the Government has so far failed to take any meaningful action to regulate the hundreds of tanning salons around the country. An estimated three million Britons regularly use sunbeds, with children as young as 11 using the equipment to achieve tans like those of celebrity idols. Government guidelines advise against use by youngsters but many sunbeds are in unstaffed, coin-operated booths, meaning there is no screening of customers. Sunbeds are also increasingly powerful, with the UV output from modern machines 10 to 15 times more intense than the midday sun on a Mediterranean beach. Announcing the reclassification in the Lancet Oncology medical journal, the experts warned that the use of sunbeds and lamps was widespread in many developed countries, especially among young women. The alert comes amid concern about soaring rates of the most deadly form of skin cancer. Sunbed use is partly blamed for the number of cases of malignant melanoma more than doubling in just 20 years. Some 9,417 men and women in England developed the disease between 1985 and 1987. But by 2004-2006, the figure had risen to 24,356. Research analysed by the WHO included a large-scale review which concluded that using sunbeds before the age of 30 raises the odds of skin cancer by 75 per cent. Some of the studies also flagged up a convincing link between sunbeds and eye cancer. Dr Beatrice Secretan, of the WHO'S International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), described the reclassification as ‘significant’. She said: ‘It means sunbeds are now up there with such things as cigarettes and alcohol as the most dangerous products to use when it comes to developing cancer. ‘What we do now is send this advice to the various regulatory bodies around the world. We hope our message will get across to the owners of these machines as well as the users.To read the rest of this article go HERE or on MSN HERE.
Now I'm no angel here, I have used sunbeds in the past but not for years now, and for the past few years I have become very anti-tan. In fact I rarely leave home without Factor 85 on year round and am now 'Proud to be Pale'. I also last year started seeing a dermatologist every other year, just to get a once over of my own fair freckled skin. This is something I feel strongly enough about, that I won't beat about the bush and will get on my soap-box about it if needed with others.My reasons for staying determinedly pale are based partly on skin cancer risk, especially now I live in a higher risk area, where there are many more cases. But also not wanting to age quickly and wrinkle badly, which has been made very apparent by some of the women I come across who live here and never use/d sun protection. Let's just say you can really see them coming, or predict who will be in their gang within a few years, and I am not looking to join them! I know very few people here who use sunscreen in daily life, even in mid-summer.I regularly see people burned to a crisp here and they are often completely flippant about it or laugh it off, which I find not only scary but idiotic! I wonder if they'd swallow a teaspoon of arsenic if I offered it to them and think it cool or funny?So if I do tan, which is very rare, it's always fake. Hopefully this news will now inspire others to do the same and think of their health first. Pale & smooth is much more beautiful.If posting this today stops even one reader using tanning beds again, then it was my most worthwhile post this year.