So the experts say that tanning beds are even more harmful than sun exposure, and should be avoided, because it may cause irreversible damage, including skin cancer.
However, tanning beds have a few positive effects too. Let me explain...
I'd been pretty stressed out lately, not like that's anything new! Between my kids, our bills, the housework, and constantly worrying about my weight loss goals, I've just been a total mess. Yesterday the $h*t hit the fan for me. My dryer decided to stop spinning, I had wet clothes in both the dryer and the washer and no way of getting them dry... they just sat there getting stinky. Of course yesterday was also my weigh in day, and I had lost less than a pound in a week, that was rather depressing. I was feeling pretty crummy all day. Then my kids came home from school, and voila.. instant chaos!!
That morning while dropping my husband off at work, there was a sign on the tanning salon window next door saying they were offering free tans. So I got to thinking about it and decided that when I picked him up that night I'd go get a tan! I hadn't been tanning in probably over 10 years because I can't afford it, but hey, this one is free!
I cannot believe how amazing I felt after that 10 minute tan! It was 10 minutes of pure relaxation. No kids screaming or crying or not doing as their told. It was just me, my thoughts, and a nice warm tanning bed, and of course a radio nearby playing some pretty good music. I did manage to get a slight burn on some areas that haven't been exposed to the sun in years, like my back, tummy, and the tops of my thighs.. but it's so minor it doesn't even hurt.
The main reason tanning makes you feel good is because while exposed to the UV rays, your skin absorbs Vitamin D, a natural mood enhancer, among other things. You'll get the same effect if exposed to direct sunlight, unfortunately in a lot of areas, including Central, NY where I live, sunlight is pretty scarce between October and April.
Experts will suggest sensible sun exposure as opposed to tanning beds and salons, but I'm guessing those experts don't live in an area that doesn't see a lot of sun!
If you're feeling rather cranky or stressed, or just have the winter blues and want to escape for awhile, visit your local tanning salon. You'll be surprised at what a difference 10 minutes can make. But of course, tan safely!