MARTINS FERRY - Ohio Lawmakers are working to limit the use of anyone under the age of 18 using an indoor tanning beds. This would ban anyone, 18 and under from tanning beds unless a doctor gives that individual permission.
"Prom and homecoming season are the only time (someone under the age of 18) tan, other then that, there are very few kids," said Jeff Thrash, owner of Sun Video and Tanning in Martins Ferry. "What (the lawmakers) are going after is nothing, they tan four weeks out of the year."
According to Thrash, those under the age of 18 is less than 15 percent of his business.
Teens would not punished for tanning, but the salon owners who allowed the teen to tan could face a fine and have their license revoked. Those who aid the juvenile that is seeking indoor tanning could face two months of jail time. Lawmakers have tried to pass this bill twice in recent years and have yet to be successful.
The reason for this third attempt to pass is that a lot of the high risk exposure that eventually could lead to skin cancer later on in life. Exposure to the sun and UV rays that are found in tanning beds in children and teens causes the most damage.
The two categories of skin cancer are Melanoma and non-melanoma. Melanoma can be treated if it is caught early enough, can spread to other parts of the body and can be fatal. non-melanoma rarely spreads and can be treated if it is discovered early enough. non-melanoma also has high survival rates.
States such as California and Vermont have banned anyone under the age of 18 from using indoor tanning. Thirty-three other states have regulations for minors, mostly that he or she needs parential permission to use a tanning bed. Other states have restrictions that no one under the age of 14 can use a tanning bed or limit the exposure time.
Van Dyne can be reached at email@example.com.