UV Tanning Advertisements in High School Newspapers | Adolescent Medicine | JAMA Dermatology | JAMA Network
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April 2006

UV Tanning Advertisements in High School Newspapers

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Department of Dermatology, University of Colorado at Denver Health Sciences Center, Aurora (Drs Freeman, Francis, and Bowland and Ms Lundahl); and Denver Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Denver, Colo (Dr Dellavalle).

Arch Dermatol. 2006;142(4):460-462. doi:10.1001/archderm.142.4.460

Objective  To examine the increasing use of UV tanning parlors by adolescents, despite the World Health Organization recommendation that no one under the age of 18 years use UV tanning devices.

Design  We examined tanning advertisements in a sample of public high school newspapers published between 2001 and 2005 in 3 Colorado counties encompassing the Denver metropolitan area.

Results  Tanning advertisements appeared in newspapers from 11 (48%) of 23 schools. Newspaper issues (N = 131) contained 40 advertisements placed by 18 tanning parlors. Advertisements commonly offered discounts (19 of 40) including unlimited tanning offers (15 of 40). Thirteen advertisements featured non-UV tanning treatments, and 2 advertisements mentioned parental consent or accompaniment for UV tanning.

Conclusions  UV radiation, a classified carcinogen, is commonly and specifically marketed to adolescents through high school newspaper advertising. Public health skin cancer prevention policies should include the prohibition of UV tanning advertising to minors.