Most Americans believe they can start their summer tan a little faster by going to tanning beds, however, they don’t realize that without proper protection, those tanning beds can cause serious burns not only to the skin, but to the eyes.  Research shows that UV radiation levels of a tanning bed are 100 times that of the natural sun.  The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) requires tanning facilities to furnish clean, UV-blocking goggles to all consumers.  Without these protective eye goggles, the New Jersey Society of Optometric Physicians warns that using a tanning bed without protective goggles is the “equivalent to staring at the sun.”

Some tips if you choose a tanning bed:

  • Request goggles when using tanning beds;
  • Use proper skin care.
  • Don’t overdo it!

According to a recent ABC News report: persons are still very complacent when it comes to using sunscreen.  According to a survey done by Consumer Reports National Research Center, 31% of Americans don’t use sunscreen, while 69% are occasional users.  Dr. Doris Day, Skin Cancer Foundation spokeswoman says there are many places on the body that are frequently overlooked when using sunscreen: back of neck, neck and chest area, side of face, tops of feet, and top of head.  Sunscreen with at least 15 SPF should be applied an ounce at a time before getting in the sun, and reapplied hourly.  The American Cancer Society states that more than 1 million skin cancers are diagnosed annually in the U.S.  It is of the utmost importance that children’s skin is protected from the sun.

When you go outdoors for work or play, remember to wear ultra-violet absorbing eyewear, (auto darkening safety glasses), which provides the greatest measure of UV protection when outdoors; wear a hat; and plenty of sunscreen.

Source: Prevent Blindness America
ABC News
Skin Cancer Foundation

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