New research published by the Skin & Cancer Foundation Inc has revealed sun protection is not part of our daily routine with three-quarters (76.1 per cent) of Australian parents saying their children only use sunscreen when they or their kids remember.
The Australian Sun Safety Survey Data Report also shows that nearly nine in 10 (86.1 per cent) parents indicated their child is either not wearing the recommended amount or are unsure if sunscreen is being applied correctly.
Despite the fact that Australia has the highest rate of skin cancer globally, the research showed around one in seven Aussie children (15.1 per cent) are not using sunscreen as a sun protection measure, with over half (54.7 per cent) forgetting to use or reapply.
Associate Professor Rosemary Nixon from the Skin & Cancer Foundation Inc said, “We need to understand how important it is to look after our skin, which includes applying sunscreen and having regular skin checks. It is crucial that we take the responsibility to educate our children on sun safety. We have a responsibility to fill these knowledge gaps across age groups.”
Additional findings from The Australian Sun Safety Survey Data Report:
- More than one-third (36.3 per cent) of Australian children aged between 0 and 18 have suffered from sunburn in the last 12 months.
- Only two in five (41.9 per cent) Aussie parents say their children use sunscreen daily regardless of their activities.
- More than two in five (42.8 per cent) Aussie teens suffered burns in the past 12 months.
- Nearly half (48.9 per cent) of Aussie parents have not examined themselves for skin cancer, with only one in five (19.3 per cent) planning to do so within the next 12 months or in the next five years.
- Two in three (66.0 per cent) parents are not aware that sunscreen can become less effective if stored at a temperature greater than 25oC.
- A little over half (52.6 per cent) of Aussie parents know sunscreen may be less effective after it has been exposed to extreme temperatures. Close to half (47.4 per cent) either disagree or do not know. Although more than half (58.0 per cent) of Aussie parents believe sunscreen doesn’t work after it has passed its expiration date, more than two in five (42.0 per cent) either disagree or do not know.
- Half (50.4 per cent) of Aussie parents do not typically look at the expiry date of sunscreen before they use it, with three in 10 (31.1 per cent) admitting they rarely or never do so.
See Media Release.
The Australian Sun Safety Survey Data Report was commissioned with an untied education grant from Banana Boat to examine awareness and behavioural trends driving sun protection measures amongst Australian families.