Correlates of tanning dependence among sexual minority males.

Sexual minority males are a group at high risk for developing skin cancer, which may be related to elevated rates of indoor tanning. Tanning dependence may be one risk factor for indoor tanning behavior, yet little research has focused on the predictors of skin cancer risk behaviors in sexual minority males. The aim of the current study was to explore the association between tanning dependence and skin cancer risk behaviors in a sample of sexual minority males. Participants were 230 sexual minority males of age 15—35 years (M = 24.66, SD = 5.44) living in San Diego County, California, United States. Participants completed measures of skin cancer risk behaviors (e.g., indoor tanning behavior and use of sunscreen), and tanning dependence was measured via the Behavioral Addiction Indoor Tanning Screener. Results demonstrated significant positive associations between tanning dependence and all measures of skin cancer risk behaviors. Elevated tanning dependence was associated with greater indoor tanning frequency (b = .75, p < .001), greater odds of having indoor tanned (odds ratio = 1.84, p = .007), greater intent to indoor tan (b = .90, p < .001), and lower sunscreen use (b = −.22, p = .002). These results highlight the role of tanning dependence in understanding why sexual minority males may engage in skin cancer risk behaviors. Skin cancer prevention efforts aimed at reducing indoor tanning in sexual minority males may benefit from adding a component designed to address tanning dependence in this population. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)