Dr. Glatt discusses UV tanning obsession

Tanorexia Troubles

Wrinkles and brown spots and cancer…oh my!

Toned, tan, fit, and…ready to get skin cancer? Maybe Snoop should have rapped, “wrinkles, fine lines, melanoma.” It might not be as catchy, but it’s definitely more educational!

That’s right, we’ve heard it before, and yet we still have trouble embracing our beautiful, pale, Katy Perry-esque skin. Instead, we toast it until we look more like that scary über-tan mom. And while California girls may be attractive (OK, we’re a little biased here), tanorexia is not a good look on anyone! We talked to leading plastic surgeon Dr. Brian Glatt about the UV tanning epidemic.

Is there a certain point at which a person can be called “addicted to tanning” or “tanorexic”?
An over-obsession with being tan…without ever letting the color fade or when someone finds themselves fixating on being tan and feels they cannot face the world without a tan, there is likely a problem.

What are the reasons that your patients give for their tanning addiction?
Mostly because they think it looks good. Some even believe it looks healthy, which is, of course, the ultimate irony as it is anything but.

What are the common repercussions of overtanning that you deal with?
Avid tanners develop significant premature aging of the skin — think fine lines and deeper wrinkles earlier. Skin elasticity is diminished, and they can also look forward to the descent of soft tissues and droopiness.



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