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Pasty and Pregnant -- No Mystic Tans for You

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It's February. Unless you're lucky enough to live in Maui or an equally sunny place, most of us can't get a tan right now unless it's a Mystic Tan. But is this safe when you're preggers?

pregnant woman standing by a tanning booth

We called OB/GYN Suzanne Gilberg-Lenz to find out.

"There is no safety data on Mystic Tanning in pregnancy and I tell my patients to avoid chemical tanning at the very least in the first trimester, when the majority of fetal organ formation occurs," she says. "But don't forget that fetal neurologic and brain development continues throughout pregnancy (and beyond)!"

She continues: "My general philosophical perspective on matters such as these is to consider what is called the precautionary principal -- i.e., why wait 'til we KNOW a substance causes harm before discontinuing its use? (Phthalates in plastic are a good case in point here.)"

The skin is the largest absorptive surface on your body, according to Dr. Gilberg-Lenz. "Pregnancy is a great time to consider what we put on (and in) our bodies," she says. "We are exposed to so many toxins in the environment that we have no control over, maybe we should avoid the ones we can."

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3 comments so far | Post a comment now
anonymous February 20, 2009, 3:24 PM

I don’t understand why anyone trusts a chemical that permanently changes the color of their skin. too much natural sun can be damaging, I doubt a fake tan is any healthier.

jj February 21, 2009, 1:02 AM

Here’s a better way to think about it…

Would you put your newborn in the mystic tanner?

No, Then don’t get in when you’re pregnant!

This could apply to anything pregnancy related…

Would you give your baby a bottle of beer, wine, alcohol, etc.?

Would you let your baby smoke cigarettes, or blow the smoke into thier face?

Then don’t do these things when you’re pregnant!!! Easy as that!

Ju February 27, 2009, 3:41 AM

I agree. I’m lucky to be blessed with a natural tan. Black, Korean and Cherokee! I got me some pretty colored skin! I quit drinking, what little smoking I did do and ate healthier. Why would you WANT to turn yourself to leather when your preggers anyway?

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