3 years ago

“We Don’t Really Do Anything Unless it’s Really Bad”: Understanding Adolescent Sun Protective Knowledge, Attitudes and Behaviors in the U.S.

Lauren E. S. Hartsough, Amber D. Loomis, Lauren M. Menger, Arissa R. Fitch-Martin, Kim L. Henry

Abstract

Risk factors for melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, include lifetime sun exposure and a history of sunburns. However, a minority of adolescents report consistent engagement in sun protective behaviors. The few sun protection interventions that have targeted adolescents have had little effect on behavior change, which suggests that a better understanding of the issue, especially from the adolescents’ perspective, is needed. Although efforts to qualitatively examine adolescent sun protection have been carried out in a handful of countries, no studies to date have focused on U.S. adolescents. We conducted focus groups with 44 6th–8th grade students in Colorado to explore their sun protection knowledge, attitudes and behaviors. Results supported previous findings that adolescents do not engage in regular skin protection but have experienced the negative consequences of sun exposure (e.g., severe sun burns, and blistering). In addition, participants demonstrated limited and sometimes inaccurate knowledge about the long-term risks of sun exposure, as well as effective methods of sun protection. Barriers to engaging in sun protective behaviors included a desire to tan, inconvenience, and physical discomfort. Facilitators included peer and family encouragement, previous experience with sunburns and/or skin cancer, and knowledge of potential consequences. These findings provide valuable insights that can inform future intervention and research related to sun protection among U.S. adolescents.

Publisher URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10935-018-0515-x

DOI: 10.1007/s10935-018-0515-x

You might also like
Discover & Discuss Important Research

Keeping up-to-date with research can feel impossible, with papers being published faster than you'll ever be able to read them. That's where Researcher comes in: we're simplifying discovery and making important discussions happen. With over 19,000 sources, including peer-reviewed journals, preprints, blogs, universities, podcasts and Live events across 10 research areas, you'll never miss what's important to you. It's like social media, but better. Oh, and we should mention - it's free.

  • Download from Google Play
  • Download from App Store
  • Download from AppInChina

Researcher displays publicly available abstracts and doesn’t host any full article content. If the content is open access, we will direct clicks from the abstracts to the publisher website and display the PDF copy on our platform. Clicks to view the full text will be directed to the publisher website, where only users with subscriptions or access through their institution are able to view the full article.