Hairdressers and Barbers May Be At Increased Cancer Risk

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Hairdressers and Barbers May Be At Increased Cancer Risk

Home => News Briefs => Hairdressers and Barbers May Be At Increased Cancer Risk

Hairdressers and Barbers May Be At Increased Cancer Risk

Source: American Cancer Society

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Around 7 out of 10 women, as well as a small but increasing number of men, use hair dyes. You may or may not have heard rumors about a link between using hair dye and getting cancer.

While customers would apply it only once a month or so, the hairdressers and barbers are exposed to it several times every day they work.

According to the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a World Health Organization panel that maintains the world's most commonly-used system for classifying carcinogens, regular exposure to hair dyes, processing agents, and other chemicals used in hair salons and barbershops probably increases cancer risk.

Their "probably" classification is backed by fairly strong evidence of it. But there's not enough evidence to say whether personal use of these products is linked to elevated risk.

Some of the products used by hairdressers and barbers, such as dyes, pigments, rubber chemicals, and curing agents—have been found to cause tumors in rats in laboratory studies or have been known to cause bladder cancer in humans. In some studies, increased risk has been associated with permanent dyes and use of darker-colored hair dyes.

IARC researchers found a small, but consistent, risk of bladder cancer among male hairdressers and barbers.

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