Survey: 75 percent say a tan is healthy

June 13, 2012 at 12:02 AM
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SCHAUMBURG, Ill., June 12 (UPI) -- Almost three-quarters of U.S. adults ages 18-29 years agreed with the statement, "Sun exposure is good for your health," a survey indicated.

An American Academy of Dermatology conducted an online survey of U.S. adults nationwide that found about 40 percent of respondents age 30 and under tried to get a tan using a tanning bed, spending time in the sun, using a self-tanner or getting a spray tan.

One-fourth of respondents ages 18-29 were unsure whether sun exposure can cause wrinkles.

"Ultimately, seeking to change the color of your skin is self-defeating because exposure to ultraviolet radiation -- either through tanning beds or by seeking the sun -- can lead to wrinkles, prematurely aging skin and even a diagnosis of skin cancer," Dr. Zoe D. Draelos, a board-certified dermatologist, said in a statement.

To address the dangers of tanning and encourage young women to embrace their natural skin color, the academy produced a television public service advertisement targeting this group.

"Born" showcases the beauty of skin from infancy through toddlerhood to teen years and asks women to change their thinking -- not their skin -- and stop tanning, Draelos said.

The survey of 1,151 U.S. adults was conducted by Relevant Research Inc. of Chicago from Dec. 29, 2011, to Jan. 4, 2012. No margin of error was provided.

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