I'm not sure how I missed adding this one to my blog, but I did. I wrote this piece over the summer, and Club Mid@Scary Mommy published it.
My Obessession With Tanning Beds Almost Killed Me
There aren't too many ways to say it that haven't been said already...tanning is stupid.
You don't know that until you or someone you love experiences melanoma. My melanoma was removed and required no further treatment. I was one of the fortunate ones. Regular skin checks, a yearly round of Efudex to remove precancerous spots, and a new obession with SPF have replaced my tanning fixation.
I swore off tanning of any type in 2007, but the effects of years spent slathering myself with tanning accelerator will never leave me. Each year since then, I have had multiple spots either frozen or biopsied. Three times since my melanoma was taken off, I have had to return to have Mohs surgery on basal cell carcinomas. A quick Google search will show you photo upon photo of the scars left behind when even a small spot of melanoma or a basal cell carcinoma is removed.
As I type this, I am finishing a round of Efudex on my chest to remove multiple precancerous spots I never knew were there until this chemotherapy cream pulled them to the surface.
Eight years later and I am still paying.
Don't tan. Don't let anyone you love tan. Stay pale.
If you have tanned or this article wasn't enough for you, I encourage you to know your ABCs. Visit skincancer.org to familiarize yourself with the warning signs.
Seriously, though. Just stop.