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New Research on Genetic Changes in Melanomas and Teens' Use of Indoor Tanning Could Lead to Better Prevention and Treatment Strategies
Date:7/30/2008

a consisted of a phone survey of 6,125 teen/parent pairs, with the teen sample ranging in age from 14 to 17. It was noted that 52 percent of the teen sample was female, 69 percent was classified as non-Hispanic white, and approximately 10.4 percent had used indoor tanning in the past year.

Other facets of the study included analyzing the presence and stringency of state indoor tanning legislation; evaluating local enforcement of state laws; assessing the density (per population) of tanning facilities in each city (i.e., availability); and assessing the practices of tanning facilities related to youth access, including parental consent, banning teens based on age, and the frequency teens were allowed to tan their first week.

The study found that only 28 states had any type of indoor tanning law, with 21 of these states having a youth access law. Even the majority of states with tanning laws that were reviewed did not perform annual inspections, and 70 percent of the facilities said they would allow a fair-skinned, 15-year-old girl who had never used an indoor tanning facility to tan every day the first week of tanning.

"Access to indoor tanning was found to be a significant contributing factor in teens use of these facilities," said Dr. Weinstock. "The study found that having a higher density of facilities in one's city and having at least one facility within two miles of one's home were each significantly related to indoor tanning. In fact, the lead investigator pointed out that the mean number of tanning facilities per city exceeded the number of Starbucks locations, and 89 percent of the teens in the sample lived within three miles of a tanning facility."

Dr. Weinstock also noted that the individual influences that were significantly associated with a higher likelihood of tanning included being female, older, or non-Hispanic white; having parents or friends who tan indoors; believing that tans are attractive; being exposed to ads; and h
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SOURCE American Academy of Dermatology
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