True Life: I am addicted to tanning

Hello everyone! I am not much of a fanatic for reality television so I don’t really understand what the best choices would be. In this case, I chose tanning. Although it may not be an outright physically visible (in the sense of a characteristic of disease) condition, addiction is a social disorder that results in many health problems. In most cases the average addiction is something such as drugs, exercise, body looks, as well as anything that produces endorphins. Tanning provides positive feelings for those who are socially anxious and believe that they do not look good without being as tan as possible. The video follows two young adults, one male and one female, in their search to be the tannest they can be.

This narrative is in the form of a quest that comes in two forms depending on the party involved. For the family, it is a quest to end their family member’s addiction to tanning while their children have the inverse whereas they are on a quest to be as tan as humanely possible. The use of an illness narrative here is to hopefully turn around the mindset that putting the body’s health at risk to be tan is an acceptable thing. The interaction with medical concerns from both family and medical professionals is present to helot this hope to spark change in their lifestyles.

In my opinion, it is societies obsession with superficial lifestyles that is what causes things such as addiction to tanning and other “beauty-products” that are used to help one become more “beautiful”. With advancements in plastic surgery helping those in need, it also acts as a crutch for those who wish to be beautiful, which becomes a sick obsession in certain cases. For example, within the documentary the daughter (who is only 18) is confronted by her mother to explain how she will be wrinkled before she’s reached an appropriate age to do so. To this, the daughter responds with that she could simply then inject Botox to correct this problem. This mindset is extremely harmful to the person.

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  1. Krystn Hartner says:

    I feel that this addiction of being tan is growing because of the way society views being beautiful. In this YouTube video, Trisha thinks that anyone who doesn’t have a little color is gross. She lives in California and she doesn’t understand how some people are not tan who live there. I think this condition has everything to do with culture/society. I did not see the True Life episode, but I can almost guarantee that these people are doing this because of the way “beautiful” is supposed to look. I have known people from experience that tan every single day because they want to look gorgeous. Instead, they turn out to be orange and you can see the wrinkles already forming. Trisha also states in the video how she will hit every tanning salon down the block to get that “sun-kissed” tan that she wants. Being exposed to that much tanning can harm the body extremely. It may not seem like a big deal to her now, but down the road serious problems can arise (skin cancer, etc.) This is a social disorder that needs to be focused on more or it is going to be overlooked as a medical condition.

    “My Strange Addiction: Tanning” YouTube Video, 1:30. posted by Discovery Fit and Health, August 12, 2010.

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