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Tanning beds may be addictive.

People who frequently use tanning beds may be responding to an addictive neurologic reward-and-reinforcement trigger, according to a pilot study published in Addiction Biology. Study participants underwent tanning sessions that exposed them to ultraviolet radiation or to filtered, "sham" UVR. The subjects reported how they felt after the sessions, and underwent single-photon emission CT scans showing brain blood flow. Brain activity after tanning bed UVR was similar to that seen in people who are addicted to drugs and alcohol, the researchers concluded. The finding could explain why-people continue to use tanning beds even when they know the danger of doing so, said study author Dr. Bryon Adinoff of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas. "Using tanning beds has rewarding effects in the brain, so people may feel compelled to persist in the behavior even though it's bad for them," Dr. Adinoff said in a statement.

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Title Annotation:POLICY & PRACTICE
Author:Correa, Frances
Publication:Clinical Psychiatry News
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 1, 2011
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