Author(s): Banks BA, Silverman RA, Schwartz RH, Tunnessen WW Jr
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Abstract A survey of 220 adolescents attending a multiphysician pediatric office in Virginia was conducted to determine the frequency with which they used sunscreens. Eighty-one percent of the teenagers in the study stated that they spent most weekends in the sun; however, only 9\% always used sunscreen, while 33\% never did. Factors found to be associated with increased sunscreen use included female sex (odds ratio = 4.5, P less than .0001), having a best friend who routinely used sunscreen (odds ratio = 3.0, P less than .001), having parents who insisted on sunscreen use when the teenagers were children (odds ratio = 3.0, P = .006), and knowing that the maximum time for safe exposure to the sun is short (odds ratio = 6.2, P less than .0001). Adolescents with a history of skin cancer in the family were not more likely to use sunscreens than other teenagers. Thirty-three percent of the girls and 16\% of the boys older than 15 years of age reported that they had visited a tanning salon at least once. This survey substantiates poor compliance with sunscreen use by teenagers despite increasing evidence of the dangers of excessive sun exposure.
This article was published in Pediatrics
and referenced in Primary Healthcare: Open Access