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Understanding the risks.
UV radiation from the sun, tanning beds, or sun lamps may cause skin cancer. While skin cancer has been associated with sunburn, moderate tanning may also produce the same effect. UV radiation can also have a damaging effect on the immune system and cause premature aging of the skin, giving it a wrinkled, leathery appearance, along with broken blood vessels and discoloration, very uneven in appearance.
The United States Department of Health & Human Services has declared ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun and artificial sources, such as tanning beds and sun lamps, as a known carcinogen (cancer causing substance).
Indoor tanning lamps emit UVA and UVB radiation at levels that are far higher than the sun. New, high-pressure sunlamps emit doses that can be as much as 15 times that of the sun.
Exposure to UV light is a known risk factor for melanoma.
The American Academy of Dermatology Association (AADA) opposes indoor tanning and supports a ban on the production and sale of indoor tanning equipment for non-medical purposes.