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Age Restrictions For Indoor Tanning Do Not Reduce Melanoma

Age-restriction for indoor tanners is a hot topic in many places right now. The most used argument for a ban is to decrease the seemingly rampant skin-cancer. Unfortunately there is no statistic supporting this argument.


Restrictions for teenagers to visit indoor tanning salons are introduced in more and more places.

A team of researchers from Colorado School of Public Health has compiled current legislation of indoor tanning throughout the world and compared them with existing legislation found in 2003.

The conclusion from the study is … “Since 2003, access to indoor tanning has become increasingly restricted around the world.”

France made indoor tanning illegal for teenagers more than 15 years ago.

Actually the study goes back all the way to 1997 when France, as the first country in the world introduced an 18-year limit for indoor tanning.

Countless other regulations and frequent controls (bordering on harassment) of tanning salons by the authorities, have reduced the number of indoor tanners to the lowest in the world.

In addition, France remains the largest market for sun care products, according to Mintel Oxygen Reports.

More than 15 years of indoor tanning ban for teenagers and the world’s largest per-capita consumption of sun-protection cosmetics makes France a perfect object for an analysis of the effects of the measures against melanoma.

It did not reduce the number of diagnosed melanoma cases.

Unfortunately, the campaign against skin-cancer in France seems to have had no positive influence whatsoever on the incidence of melanoma.

The number of diagnosed cases among French women (and men) has grown more or less linearly from 1980 to 2011 according to The French National Cancer Institute.

Karl G Olson, the author of “The Tanning Blog” and a researcher on the subject of “melanoma marketing”, explains his theory of why the increase of incidences of melanoma continues:

“It is because there is no correlation between the number of diagnosed cases of suspected melanoma and the number of actual cases of malign melanoma.

Melanoma incidences are artificially inflated in order to increase the fear of UV-exposure. This increases the sales of sun protection cosmetics, which is the main goal of the “melanoma-marketing”.

A recent study of data from dermatologists’ clinics all over the world, shows that as many as 93 out of 100 incisions (not counting biopsies) made for suspected melanoma, turned out to be of benign skin-lesions. The treatment of skin-cancer patients has grown to a multi-billion dollar industry thanks to the “melanoma-marketing”.

“I suppose that no one would trust to fly with a pilot who has a 7% success rate of landings. But for dermatologists’ surgery, this rate seems to be acceptable,” concludes Olson.

“Perhaps politicians who are in favor of banning teenagers from indoor tanning should study the subject more objectively and not only rely on one-sided material promoting an unreasonable fear of sunlight.”


 Indoor tanning ban
 tanning legislation
 melanoma incidences
 sun care cosmetics

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