Should Tanning Be Considered Addictive?
Despite well-documented health risks, indoor tanning is still popular in the United States: More than 10 million Americans use tanning beds every year. Of those people, most go more than once, according to Jared Stapleton, a public health researcher at Rutgers University. Some of them—up to 5 percent among college students, the most-studied demographic—develop a compulsion to tan. Colloquially referred to as “tanorexia,” or even “tanning addiction,” the behavior displays many of the markers of a true addiction. Some experts in the psychiatric and public health community even argue that it is one, regardless of the fact that it’s not yet classified as such by the American Psychiatric Association.