Female college students in Indiana know the risk of tanning indoors. But a new study from researchers at the Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis showed those women choose to hit the tanning bed anyway.
"It makes me feel good. That's why I like to go. I don't know, especially in the winter time," said student Mackenzie Flamion.
This IUPUI student shares the same feeling as many of her classmates. A recent study surveyed 629 female students and the results were startling. 99.4% agreed that tanning can cause skin problems such as premature aging and skin cancer. 69.1% agreed they still like to get a tan even though they know tanning may be bad for their skin.
"I know the risk and I try not to go too often. I guess it is kind of addicting is the best way to put it," Flamion said.
83% agreed tanning makes them feel more relaxed and pleasant.
"In the winter time honestly I do it for my mood. I have depression and so I think it gives me an extra boost and kind of helps me get through the winter months," said faithful tanner, Jenny Nelson.
Outrun the Sun co-founder Anita Day says she wants young people to get the message about the dangers of tanning before its too late.
"One in five people is diagnosed every year with skin cancer in the united states and if you are one of the lucky ones who isn't ultimately diagnosed with skin cancer it will still come back to haunt you with wrinkles and premature aging," Day said.
Day started the non-profit after losing her father and a close friend to skin cancer. She's made it her mission to save others.
"It's highly preventable and it's the most prevalent cancer in america right now," Day said.
Outrun the Sun is the only non-profit in Indiana dedicated to skin cancer education and melanoma research. For more on their yearly run click here