Examination of use and barriers for five sun protection strategies in parents and their children

Jamie P. Schlarbaum, De Ann Lazovich, Erin Dodd, Brooke Hanson, Ingrid C. Polcari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background/Objectives: Sun protection starting in childhood is an important means of skin cancer prevention. Factors associated with sunscreen use have been previously described. However, less is known about factors associated with children's utilization of non-sunscreen sun protection strategies. We sought to examine parent and child characteristics, parental use of sun protection, and barriers associated with children's use of five sun protection strategies: sunscreen, shirts with sleeves, wide-brimmed hats, sunglasses, and shade. Methods: A cross-sectional survey of parents of children entering kindergarten through grade 8. Survey participants were recruited at the 2016 Minnesota State Fair. Results: A total of 409 parents were surveyed. The most common sun protection strategies parents reported for their child were wearing a shirt with sleeves (69.9%) and using sunscreen (61.9%), while protection via shade, wide-brimmed hats, and sunglasses were reported by less than one-quarter of parents. For each individual strategy, parents' own use of that strategy was strongly associated with that strategy in their children. Lack of child cooperation was associated with decreased use of sunscreen, shirts with sleeves, and wide-brimmed hats. Conclusion: Significant room for improvement exists in childhood sun protection. Parents should especially be encouraged to use shade, wide-brimmed hats, and sunglasses as methods of protection for their children. Advising parents to model seeking shade, applying sunscreen, and choosing appropriate clothing and hats may improve sun safety practices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)827-832
Number of pages6
JournalPediatric Dermatology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020


  • neoplasms malignant
  • photosensitivity

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Examination of use and barriers for five sun protection strategies in parents and their children'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this