Should you seek out tanning salons for a “winter tan”?

Absolutely not.  Tanning salons are very harmful to your skin.  I personally have seen a higher incidence of malignant melanomas developing in patients who have visited tanning salons.  Malignant melanomas are extremely serious and sometimes fatal, skin cancers.  They can spread internally throughout the entire body.  They can arise from normal skin or from pre-existing moles.  Any change in the size, color or shape of an existing mole or the development of a new mole as an adult should be carefully evaluated by a dermatologist for the possibility of malignant melanoma.

I recommend total body exams/scans, done by a dermatologist with expertise in removing atypical moles, every six months for patients who have had significant sun or ultraviolet light exposure on their skin.

When doing a skin exam on yourself, you should check every square inch of skin on your body including your scalp, ano-genital area, and the bottoms of your feet.  Don’t forget to also look at the skin under your nails.  Use a mirror to completely check the backside of your body.  It should be noted that melanomas do not always appear in sun-exposed areas.

– Dr. Bussell

Beverly Hills Dermatology Consultants

433 N. Camden Drive, Suite 805   Beverly Hills, CA 90210 | 310-550-7661

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