Last year an Addiction Biology study looked at addiction and indoor UV tanning. With the cold, dark days of winter upon us, and many people taking up tanning to keep a “healthy glow”, we thought taking a look at this study might shed some light on the subject. The study found that people were able to tell if they received true UV light during their session or if it was false light. If it was false, they exhibited the same desire to tan after their session as they did before they went under the light. Furthermore the parts of the brain linked to addition lit up more when the tanners were exposed to the true UV lights. The study was a pilot study, but it’s findings are nonetheless intriguing.
So if you’re thinking about tanning at a salon, please think twice and use caution–it seems that it can create a true “UV addiction.” This, paired with UV radiation’s propensity to damage your skin and increase your risk of skin cancer, can be a dangerous combination. If you find yourself craving some light during the winter months, take the opportunity to engage in fall/winter activities like walking in the park, skating, football, etc.
More details can be found in the Abstract.