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J Sch Health. 2006 Apr;76(4):150-3.

Sunscreen use among US high school students, 1999-2003.

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  • 1Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA 30341, USA.


The purpose of this paper was to examine sunscreen use among US high school students. Data were derived from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's 1999, 2001, and 2003 national Youth Risk Behavior Surveys, which are cross-sectional surveys of health risk behaviors among high school students in the United States. In 2003, 1 in 7 (14.2%) high school students reported routine sunscreen or sunblock use, and this behavior varied by sex, race/ethnicity, grade in school, and geographic region. The use of sunscreen or sunblock with a sun protection factor of 15 or higher when outside for more than 1 hour on a sunny day did not change from 1999 to 2003. Parent and child education about the importance of skin cancer prevention practices, including sunscreen use, and a school environment supportive of sun-safe practices are necessary to help reduce risk for skin cancer.

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