To wrap up our year long-series about skin cancer.. More Than Skin Deep... we're going to talk about tanning beds.
Many who crave the golden glow flock to them in the winter.
But dermatologists say, that's not good.
"There's no such thing as a safe tan."
That's the mantra of Dermatologist Cynthia Bartus, who deals with skin cancer on a daily basis. She says, "I have a lot of patients that do mention that they had used tanning beds in the past, commonly before proms or before going on vacation."
Bartus says tannings beds are so dangerous because you're getting concentrated ultraviolet light. "Outdoors you get ultraviolet A and ultraviolet B but it's more dispersed and it's not that strong, intense, focused ultraviolet exposure you get in tanning beds."
Bartus says some people think it's okay to go in a tanning bed only before a vacation. But think again.
"Even just one tanning session can put you at a much higher risk of developing melanoma and melanoma is the most deadliest form of skin cancer," says Bartus.
Bartus says having a 'base tan' is a myth.
"A base than is not going to provide you any extra sun protection as no tan at all."
But that doesn't stop some tan fans.
"People still come tanning because it's something that they grew up doing," says Wake N Bake tanning salon owner Krysti Fasching, She says she educates her clients and makes sure they go to a dermatologist. She also offers spray tanning.
"You can choose from different colors. It's an all natural organic spray, " Fasching says.
The only concern with that, according to the dermatologist, is particle inhalation. But she still says it's much safer than a traditional tanning bed.
"It's an instant tan and who doesn't feel better tan?," says Fasching.