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How is a tan related to a sunburn?

Dr. Jeanne Morrison, PhD
Family Practitioner
Both a tan and a sunburn are forms of skin damage. A sunburn is more severe than a tan, but a tan is in no way a sign of good health. UV rays affect skin cell components and functions. Your body doesn't forget or repair all of this damage, whether or not you tan or get a sunburn. Your skin will make more melanin to protect the cells, which darkens the skin, but it doesn't stop skin from burning. Such effects can lead to advanced aging and diseases like skin cancer.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.