High school female tanning rates
Updated: Saturday, February 15 2014, 11:37 PM EST
MONROE COUNTY, N.Y. – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say rates of indoor tanning among female high school students is lowest in states with multiple restrictions to youth access.
New York is one of several states that have multiple restrictions in place. Their age restriction does not allow teenagers aged 16 and younger to tan. 17-year-olds must get parental consent. If you are 18, you must show a valid form of ID.
These laws are much different than what Jessica Rockcastle grew up with as a teen. She said she started going for her eighth grade dinner dance at the age of 13.
“I went because I was wearing a white dress and my mom allowed me to start tanning,” said Rockcastle.
Now, New York state law would prohibit a 13 year old to tan. They also require customers to sign off on a sheet that warns of the hazards of indoor tanning. In addition, customers have to show eyewear before using a tanning bed. The CDC says these restrictions are working for high school girls, but there are still some who tan.
“We assess that there’s probably about 20 percent of high school students in the United States who are tanning,” said Dr. Andrew Sherman, Rochester Immediate Care.
In fact, the CDC says the odds of high school females tanning were 42 percent less in states with more restrictions, than those with none. Dr. Sherman agrees with the regulations in place, but said caution should still be used.
“Anybody that’s tanning younger than 35 years of age has almost a 60 percent higher risk of having melanoma in the future,” said Dr. Sherman.
Now at the age of 25, Rockcastle said, “It was nice to be tan for my eighth grade dinner dance but I don’t think it was appropriate that I, at 13 years old, was able to walk into a tanning salon without consent.”