A new study published in the Journal of Cancer Policy has revealed that skin cancers linked to indoor tanning are estimated to cost $343.1 million a year in medical bills.

There is strong evidence that tanning devices cause skin cancer, Medical XPress reported. Researchers estimate that in 2015 there were 263,600 cases of skin cancer that could be attributed to these indoor machines.

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"Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the US and its incidence is increasing, due in part to the increase in the use of tanning devices," said study author Dr. Hugh Waters, according to Medical XPress. "We know these devices have significant health and financial impacts, and with this study we wanted to establish these impacts clearly to support efforts to reduce their use, especially among younger people."

Other diseases including dermatitis, keratitis and porokeratosis are also attributed to indoor tanning.

But — for those who just need a little color — how safe is tanning outside in the sun?

According to the Food and Drug Administration, “there is no such thing as a safe tan.” Even if you’re already tan, it will not protect your skin from sunburn or other skin damage.

Too much time in the sun, whether it’s real or artificial, also leads to premature aging. This results in leathery, wrinkled skin, and dark spots. According to the FDA, tanning can also damage your eyes and immune system.

Read: Do Sunglasses Actually Protect Your Eyes From UV? How Sunlight Damages Optical Organs

So, is there a healthy, safe way to get tan? Your best option would probably be a sun-less spray tan. 

Source: Walters HR, et al. The Health and Economic Implications of the Use of Tanning Devices. Journal of Cancer Policy. 2017.

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