Indoor tan­ning for mi­nors should be banned, Cana­dian Med­i­cal As­so­ca­tion

Orleans Star - - LOCAL NEWS -

ap­proved a mo­tion call­ing for the ban at its an­nual gen­eral meet­ing last month.

The CMA said it will now lobby govern­ment on the res­o­lu­tions.

Dr. Jef­frey Turn­bull, CMA Pres­i­dent, says this mo­tion did not come out of the blue. The group is sup­port­ing a hand­ful of or­ga­ni­za­tions which have been ad­vo­cat­ing for stronger reg­u­la­tion of the tan­ning in­dus­try, such as the World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion and the Cana­dian Can­cer So­ci­ety.

In 2009, 75,000 Cana­di­ans had skin can­cer, with 5000 of these hav­ing the most se­vere form –melanoma. “This is a very sig­nif­i­cant in­crease,” said Dr. Turn­bull. “We know one of the biggest causes of this can­cer is ul­tra­vi­o­let ra­di­a­tion.”

“Ev­i­dence sug­gests that re­duc­ing ex­po­sure when you’re young can pre­vent these oc­cur­rences,” he said. “Be­cause of that we’re speak­ing out, and say­ing that for cos­metic pur­poses, tan­ning beds are just not a good idea.”

As well as the pro­posed ban for youth, a sec­ond res­o­lu­tion calls on govern­ment to en­force clear sig­nage and la­belling on tan­ning beds and to make the pub­lic more aware of the risks as­so­ci­ated with tan­ning.

Rachel Fortin, owner of iTan stu­dios in Or­léans, says her tan­ning stu­dio would not see a big ef­fect on busi­ness if the ban were to be passed.

“Only 4% of our clients are un­der the age of 18 and that is a very small de­mo­graphic,” Fortin says. Her stu­dio al­ready does not al­low clients un­der 16.

Fortin ar­gues indoor tan­ning can be ben­e­fi­cial to users.“We do not only fo­cus on the cos­metic pur­poses of tan­ning but rather the im­por­tance of safe tan­ning and pos­i­tive ef­fects like the Vi­ta­min D in­take,” Fortin says.

Mean­while, the In­ter­na­tional Agency for Re­search on Can­cer says the risk of can­cer in­creases by 75 per cent when us­ing tan­ning de­vices be­fore age 30.

Dr. Turn­bull says that while there is a lot of in­for­ma­tion about the dangers of tan­ning, it can be dif­fi­cult to get peo­ple to change their habits. “Young peo­ple feel that they’ll live for­ever,” he says. “We know in medicine that it’s very hard for peo­ple to ad­just their be­hav­iour when the im­pact can be 20 or 30 years away. This is hu­man na­ture but it’s our job to in­creas­ing your risk.”

tell peo­ple, you are

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