Whether you tan indoors or outdoors, the tanning process is the same. Ultraviolet rays stimulate skin cells to produce melanin, the pigment that makes your skin tan. One of the major advantages of indoor tanning is the flexibility in controlling the amount of UV exposure. Even with the increased control, there are still a number of precautions that you should take to ensure a complication free tanning experience.

Benefits

Nowadays it's hard enough to find time to carve out precious time for family and friends while juggling an ever increasing workload, let alone find time to visit the beach to get the tan you've always dreamed about. Fortunately, with the invention and growth in popularity of tanning beds, getting that glowing tan you always dreamed about can be had during your lunch break.

The traditional method of sun tanning was going to the beach, and sitting in the sun. This is quite effective in warm, sun blessed regions such as Southern California, but not much of an option for regions that receive less sun exposure and have, on the whole, less beaches.

Convenience and Control

Tanning beds provide a convenient and efficient alternative to traditional tanning. Tanning beds allow the user to control the amount of UVA and UVB light they are exposed to during the tan. Tanning equipment emits light that contains approximately 5% UVB and 95% UVA radiation. Overexposure to UVB rays, which is the root cause of sun burns, is significantly reduced in tanning beds. By limiting the amount of UVB rays and maximizing the amount of UVA rays, tanning beds allows one to tan without burning.

Safety

One of the major concerns of tanning is overexposure to UV rays which can lead to the development of skin cancer. While this may be a cause for concern for outdoor tanners, indoor tanners can rest assured. Since 1986, the Federal government has set national guidelines for the use of indoor tanning beds. These guidelines include regulations on timer and temperature control, the need for protective eyewear, electrical safety precautions, and protection from lamps.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is essential for strong bones and a healthy immune system. In addition new research has indicated that vitamin D plays a prime role in the prevention of many deadly illnesses including multiple sclerosis, tuberculosis, schizophrenia and heart disease. Recent research studies have also indicated that Vitamin D, when taken in large doses, may act as a potent anti-cancer agent. A study conducted by researchers at the University of Boston in 2008 found that indoor tanning beds may reduce the likelihood of vitamin D deficiency among elderly people.

Since vitamin D is found only in trace amounts among foods, our bodies must get the vitamin from other sources. Fortunately, vitamin D is produced naturally by the body in the presence of UVB rays. According to experts, one would need to expose approximately 25% of one's body for an estimated ten minutes at least two to three times a week to produce sufficient amounts of vitamin D. Since the average working professional doesn't get nearly the recommended sun exposure, tanning beds offer a realistic alternative for people with busy schedules.

Getting a tan these days is a piece of cake, but even though there are numerous options at your disposal, don’t be careless! Make sure to take all the necessary precautions to ensure a safe and healthy tan!