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Proposed bill calls for teenage tanning ban

By Jon Erickson
Published On: Feb 01 2013 05:15:15 PM CST
Updated On: Feb 01 2013 08:23:56 PM CST
PAMLICO COUNTY -

Teenagers would be banned from using tanning beds if a bill in the state legislature becomes law.

The proposal would require anyone under 18 years old to have a prescription before using tanning beds.

If the idea becomes law, 17-year-old Tiffany Morton’s tan wouldn’t be as deep.

“I don’t see what’s wrong with [tanning],” Morton, a senior at Pamlico High School, said.

She regularly tans at Karen’s Hair & Tanning in Bayboro.

The shop’s owner, Karen Gray, thinks the existing regulations don’t need to change.

Right now, teenagers need a parent’s permission to tan at Gray’s shop.

“The state should probably stay out of it and let the parents decide,” Gray said.

A physician’s assistant who works down the road from the tanning shop said he’d be unlikely to grant a prescription for tanning.

Tanning beds’ ultraviolet light can damage the skin and could cause cancer, Glenn Sikes, P.A., said.

Sikes says he might grant a prescription for someone with psoriasis; tanning is sometimes prescribed for patients with that condition, he said.

The bill is now in committee.