Among the many laws going into effect this month is one that focuses specifically on teens in an effort to significantly reduce the incidence of skin cancer. Prior to September 1, 2013 minors between the ages of 16 and 18 were allowed to use indoor tanning beds with parental consent. This is no longer the case.
In the interest of public health, minors under the age of 18 are no longer allowed to use tanning beds, even with parental consent. State lawmakers passed the law toughening age restrictions on indoor tanning in July and the law went into effect on September 1.
Dr. Jeffrey Gershenwald at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston said there is more than enough research linking exposure to UV rays or ultraviolet light and melanoma.
“Starting indoor tanning before the age of 18 increases melanoma risk by 85 percent.” said Gershenwald.
The American Suntanning Association says this new law could hurt tanning businesses and possibly force some to close. They also say this ban could lead to unsupervised tanning and sunburns. Regardless, Dr. Zimmet strongly recommends tanning beds be avoided.
Texas is the fifth state to enforce a law banning children from using indoor tanning beds.
If you are concerned about the health of your skin, contact Zimmet Vein & Dermatology to set up an appointment for a thorough skin exam.