We have been warned for years about the harmful effects of ultra violet rays, given off naturally by our sun and produced artificially by tanning beds. Its common knowledge that too much of these rays causes burning and in more severe cases involving prolonged or repeated exposure, skin cancer, but it can also be very damaging to the eyes.
A 23 year old Sunderland woman, Sam Laing, now has to face the very real consequences of sight loss due to necessary removal of growths which developed on both eyes after prolonged exposure to ultra- violet light.
Miss Laing openly admits she is a tanning bed junkie who prefers not to wear the recommended eye protection for tanning bed use because she doesn’t like the white ring left behind – “panda eyes.”
Miss Laing claims she used a tanning bed 3 times a week since her early teens, and about 3 months ago her eyes became sore with redness which spread into her irises, later being diagnosed with pterygium. Pterygium is a benign eye growth more commonly found in hotter climates and caused by ultra- violet light. The removal of these growths, doctors warn, can cause sight loss.
Sunbed Association spokeswoman stated, “Once a customer goes into a cubicle, locks the door and undresses, there is no way the operator can double-check that they have their goggles on.”
What’s more important? Looking good now, or being able to look later?