What’s new under the sun?

April 20, 2011   GUEST BLOG POST by Caroline Gilson 
 
Over the years, the desire to be tan led to use of tanning beds. Somehow, tanned skin is seen to be sexy and attractive. As many people have continuously begun to be “addicted” to tanning beds, their skin has been put in a dangerous environment.
 
Tanning beds have a different type of UV rays called UV-B rays. UV-B rays are more harmful to the skin than the sun’s UV rays.  
 
The dangers of tanning beds have caused the need for educational programs to educate the public about the health concerns involving tanning beds. Research studies have been done to find out the best way to communicate about the tanning beds. One study in particular looked at the use of narratives, and statistics. (http://www.springerlink.com.ezaccess.libraries.psu.edu/content/
457nhk7324q63501/fulltext.pdf)  
 
This particular study discovered that both statistics and narratives could be effective in educating individuals about the dangers of tanning beds. Specific stories about real life people seem to grab people’s attention. Statistics about tanning beds on top of narratives help with persuasion and education about tanning beds.
 
The research has been done and now it is time to effectively educate the public about the risks of tanning beds. Hopefully, through health communication, society will make better health decisions…  
 
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One Response to “What’s new under the sun?”

  1. Autumn Ciliberto says:

    I think Caroline Gilson did a very well done job on explaining the issue with the need to be tan in today’s generation. Many young girls and women today are not seeing the risk factors their allowing to put their bodies threw. Also Caroline touched on the difference between UV-B and UV sun rays; the impact from the UV-B rays is twice as strong and harmful, putting these individuals at a high risk for melanoma or other types of skin cancer. The web page full of rich information covering the issue about tanning beds, stated, “132,000 cases of melanoma (the deadliest type of skin cancer, diagnosed world-wide each year” (World Health Organization 2007). Caroline addressed a very important issue and with many female students here at Penn State tanning is now a cultural norm and if you are an individual who prefers to not use tanning beds you may look odd to others. With this increase in the need for an attractive tan appearance, statistics from the article displayed, “the incidence of skin cancer continues to rise at a rate of 3% per year” (American Cancer Society 2007). This increase in most likely due to the new tanning fad and girls buying into marketing making them feel as if they’re not tan, they’ll not be attractive. Caroline chose an important topic and her use of extended articles within her blog was helpful at addressing the issue.

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