Are You Using Tanning Beds Safely?

Answer these 5 questions to find out

According to the American Cancer Society, there are more than 1 million cases of non-melanoma skin cancer. 60,000 more cases will be diagnosed this year. With statistics like more reports than ever are circulating warning of the dangers of being in the sun and using tanning beds. If these reports have you worried and you wonder if your tanning bed might cause cancer, take this quick test to see if you’re using your tanning bed safely.

Who Said What?

Society of Melanoma Research President, David E. Fisher, MD, PhD says, “exposure to ultraviolet radiation represents one of the most avoidable causes of cancer.” Add this statement to the statistics above and it will scare you enough to never set foot in a tanning bed ever again.


Executive Director of International Tanning Association, John Overstreet, as well as Dr. Mercola, of, disagree. They believe UV light provides vitamin D that helps the body ward off many types of disease. And that moderate and responsible exposure to UV light far outweigh the consequences of not getting enough of it.

So, who’s right? As of right now, there isn’t any conclusive evidence either way. So while the debate rages on, if you want to continue tanning using a tanning bed, do so as safe as possible. To find out if your tanning safely, take this short quiz.

Are You Tanning Safely?

Answer a quick yes or no to the following questions:

Question #1: Do you limit your tanning so you don’t burn?

All doctors agree that you should never staying in the tanning bed or sun tan long enough to cause a burn. It is believed that getting sunburned raises your risk of skin cancer later in life.

Question #2: Do you wear tanning lotion?

Tanning lotion protects your skin and helps prevent burning. The tanning lotion will help protect you from UV rays.

Question #3: Do you wear goggles?

Tanning beds can cause damage to your eyes if you tan without wearing goggles.

Question #4: Do you start tanning for short amounts of time and gradually build up?

When you first begin tanning, start slow at only five minutes at a time. This lets you see how your skin reacts to the tanning bed. Some people have more sensitive skin than others. It’s better to play it safe and take a little while longer to get the tan you want than to burn.

Question #5: Do you limit your tanning to once per day or less?

Tanning more than once per day or for extended periods of time will cause damage to your skin and eyes. Aim for a light, but healthy looking tan.

If you answered ‘yes’ to the five questions above, you are using tanning beds with the proper precaution. The jury is still out as to whether or not tanning beds put you at higher risk for cancer, but in the mean time, it makes sense to use tanning beds and your common sense for a healthy glow without the risk of cancer.