Addicted to Tanning Beds? South Shore Skin Center unveils hidden dangers

From: South Shore Skin Center
Published: Tue May 08 2007

With offices in Cohasset and Plymouth, South Shore Skin Center is one of Massachusetts’ most innovative dermatology practices offering a wide range of medical, surgical and cosmetic services to a vast clientele south of Boston.

The providers at South Shore Skin Center are very concerned that many people, in particular females, are jeopardizing their health by frequenting tanning salons. Tanning beds are very popular with females age 16 to those in their 20s, as well as with those who use tanning beds before going on vacation.

A recent study of Scandinavian women published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute found that women who used tanning beds one or more times a month increased their risk of getting skin cancer (malignant melanoma) by 55 percent. The risk is even higher, increasing by 150 percent, for women who started using tanning beds in their 20s or younger.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), tanning booth exposure can cause cataracts and eye damage, premature aging of the skin and skin cancer. The AAD also concurs that women who use tanning beds more than once a month increase their risk of skin cancer by 55 percent.

Even though tanning beds emit fewer Ultraviolet B (UVB) rays, exposure to the Ultraviolet A (UVA) radiation is dangerous. It has even been found that some newer tanning beds emit UV levels greater than the natural mid-day sun of many countries.

"Contrary to popular belief, ‘pre-tanning’ in an effort to build a resistance to sunburn really only offers an SPF of 2 to 4, which is too low to be considered protection. It’s a myth that having a tan will serve as sun protection for skin cells and prevent burning. Those who are prone to sunburn in natural sunlight, will also be prone to burning in tanning beds. It’s essential that women realize that the risk of skin cancer from a tanning booth is the same risk as that from natural sunlight," explained Dr. Richard Eisen, founder of South Shore Skin Center.

"Both the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Dermatology strongly advise against the use of tanning beds and sun lamps," said Dr. Eisen.

UVA and UVB rays cause premature wrinkles as well as skin cancer with repeated and prolonged exposure. In natural sunlight, these rays are present even on cloudy days and exposed skin is left vulnerable without sunblock or sunscreen. Both UVA and UVB radiation are emitted by tanning beds and sun lamps.

"The only prevention for UVA/UVB damage from natural sunlight is sunblock or sunscreen. For those who use tanning beds, they can prevent skin damage by simply avoiding tanning beds altogether," explained Dr. Eisen.

The dermatologists at South Shore Skin Center treat common skin problems such as acne and eczema as well as serious problems such as skin cancers. They diagnose and treat common and premalignant skin lesions as well as melanoma in children, teens and adults.

For questions or to arrange for a skin exam, contact Jean Adams at South Shore Skin Center, (781) 383-3340.

South Shore Skin Center with Drs. Richard Eisen and Ramzi Saad
Founded in 1984, South Shore Skin Center is one of Massachusetts’ most innovative dermatology practices offering a wide range of medical, surgical and cosmetic services. Caring for patients with skin cancer and other skin conditions such as eczema, acne and hair loss in addition to providing cosmetic anti-aging treatments; spider vein removal; tattoo removal and other services. South Shore Skin Center physicians are committed to providing the highest level of service to children and adults throughout the greater Boston area.

South Shore Skin Center offices are located at 223 Chief Justice Cushing Highway, Suite 202 in Cohasset, Mass. (781) 383-3340, and 45 Resnik Road, Suite 102 in Plymouth, Mass., (508) 747-0711. For more information, visit their website at

Company: South Shore Skin Center
Contact Name: Jeanne Gutowski
Contact Email:
Contact Phone: 781-383-3340

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