Sunscreen use in kids

Hi All

I found this fascinating (see the full abstract below):

 

Sunscreen application in kids: pump dispenser is best but most kids still do not apply sufficient sunscreen

 

Much like adults, school children apply sunscreen substantially less than is recommended although the pump has been highlighted as the best dispenser for the products, according to a study in Australia.

The objective was to measure the thickness at which primary schoolchildren apply sunscreen on school day mornings and to compare it with the recommended thickness of 2mg/ cm2,  as well as to investigate how application thickness was influenced by age of the child  and by dispenser type (500-mL pump, 125-mL squeeze bottle, or 50-mL roll-on).

The results showed that children applied their sunscreen at a median thickness of 0.48 mg/cm2. Children applied significantly more sunscreen when using the pump (0.75 mg/cm2) and the squeeze bottle (0.57 mg/cm2) compared with the roll-on (0.22 mg/cm2) (P < .001 for both).

The study concluded that, regardless of age, primary schoolchildren apply sunscreen at substantially less than the recommended rate (and in fact much less than 1.00 mg/cm2, similar to what has been observed among adults). Some sunscreen dispensers seem to facilitate thicker application than others.

As usual, comments greatly appreciated – email me at Ian.katz@southernsun.com.au

Regards

Ian Katz

 

The Children and Sunscreen Study

A Crossover Trial Investigating Children’s Sunscreen Application Thickness and the Influence of Age and Dispenser Type

Abbey Diaz, MAppSc; Rachel E. Neale, PhD; Michael G. Kimlin, PhD; Lee Jones, BStats; Monika Janda, PhD 

Arch Dermatol. Published online January 16, 2012. doi:10.1001/archdermatol.2011.2586

Objectives  To measure the thickness at which primary schoolchildren apply sunscreen on school day mornings and to compare it with the thickness (2.00 mg/cm2) at which sunscreen is tested during product development, as well as to investigate how application thickness was influenced by age of the child (school grades 1-7) and by dispenser type (500-mL pump, 125-mL squeeze bottle, or 50-mL roll-on).

Design  A crossover quasiexperimental study design comparing 3 sunscreen dispenser types.

Setting  Children aged 5 to 12 years from public primary schools (grades 1-7) in Queensland, Australia.

Participants  Children (n = 87) and their parents randomly recruited from the enrollment lists of 7 primary schools. Each child provided up to 3 observations (n = 258).

Intervention  Children applied sunscreen during 3 consecutive school weeks (Monday through Friday) for the first application of the day using a different dispenser each week.

Main Outcome Measure  Thickness of sunscreen application (in milligrams per square centimeter). The dispensers were weighed before and after use to calculate the weight of sunscreen applied. This was divided by the coverage area of application (in square centimeters), which was calculated by multiplying the children’s body surface area by the percentage of the body covered with sunscreen.

Results  Children applied their sunscreen at a median thickness of 0.48 mg/cm2. Children applied significantly more sunscreen when using the pump (0.75 mg/cm2) and the squeeze bottle (0.57 mg/cm2) compared with the roll-on (0.22 mg/cm2) (P < .001 for both).

Conclusions  Regardless of age, primary schoolchildren apply sunscreen at substantially less than 1.00 mg/cm2, similar to what has been observed among adults. Some sunscreen dispensers seem to facilitate thicker application than others.

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