Some people prefer their tanned skin which is why they go sunbathing or indoor tanning. Some people think that it is safer to do indoor tanning than sunbathing. The truth is indoor tanning has its dangers as the World Health Organization considered it to be highly carcinogenic or can cause cancer to humans.
Besides our overall health, indoor tanning is dangerous for the health of our eyes. We know how dangerous it is for our eyes when it is overexposed to UV rays. The ultraviolet damage is cumulative which means the effects will be insignificant at the moment but it builds up over time.
Studies have shown that being in an indoor tanning bed is as much as 100 times exposure to UV light than being out in the sun. It is not only dangerous for the skin but also to our internal structures and external structures of eyes and eyelids because it can cause serious damage.
Is Closing My Eyes Not Enough?
During the tanning session, you are asked to close your eyes to protect them. The UV light in the tanning beds is strong which is why closing your eyes will not be enough to protect them. Cataracts, macular degeneration, dry eye, sunburn, and blurry vision are some of the eye health problems that can result from indoor tanning.
As age advances, cataracts and macular degeneration occur but exposure from UV in the tanning bed can accelerate it. The clouding of the eye’s lens or cataracts makes it difficult for you to see and distinguish different colors. You can lose your central vision with macular degeneration. Both cataracts and macular degeneration can be exacerbated by UV rays.
If you think a regular sunburn is painful, how about experiencing photokeratitis or sunburned corneas which makes it not enjoyable more. You can experience a gritty feeling under your eyelids, burning, redness, and runniness as symptoms. UV exposure can also make your eyes red and irritated, cause dry eyes, and insufficient tear production that makes you more vulnerable to infections.
Why You Should Prioritize Eye Health Over Skin Tone
It is popular and attractive to have tanned skin but you do not want to risk your eye health from UV damage. It is impossible to ban people from indoor tanning or sunbathing but patients need to know that they should protect their eyes and skin more than the beauty standards of society. If you still consider using a tanning bed, make sure to wear protective goggles.