• Sun exposure and sun protection practices of children and their parents.

      Kiely, A D; Hourihane, J; University College Cork Department of Paediatrics, Cork University Hospital, Cork. adkiely@yahoo.co.uk (2009-05)
      The primary aims of this study were: to estimate sun exposure in hours of children in Cork during the summer months; to examine sun protection measures used by children and their parents and to explore parental knowledge of sun exposure and protection. A cross-sectional study, using a semi-structured questionnaire, was conducted in June 2006 in primary schools, pre-schools and creches throughout Cork City and County. Parents of 250 children aged less than 12 years were sampled. Mean sun exposure of Cork children was 40.9 hours per week in the summer months, with 77 (46.1%) children developing sunburn. 59.3% of the studied children were of skin type 1 or 2. 95 (57%) children on weekdays and 137 (82%) children at weekends were exposed to the sun between 11 am and 3 pm. Sunscreen and hats/caps were the most common protection measures used. A minority used protective clothing, sunglasses or sought shade. Thirty one (30.5%) children had sunscreen reapplied every 2 hours. Knowledge of sun protection was considerable among Irish parents. However the frequency of sunburn among Irish children suggests we are not providing them with adequate sun protection.