Child sun protection: Sun-related attitudes mediate the association between children's knowledge and behaviours
Article first published online: 19 NOV 2008
© 2008 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2008 Paediatrics and Child Health Division (Royal Australasian College of Physicians)
Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health
Volume 44, Issue 12, pages 692–698, December 2008
How to Cite
Wright, C., Reeder, A. I., Gray, A. and Cox, B. (2008), Child sun protection: Sun-related attitudes mediate the association between children's knowledge and behaviours. Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health, 44: 692–698. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1754.2008.01408.x
- Issue published online: 18 DEC 2008
- Article first published online: 19 NOV 2008
- Accepted for publication 03 June 2008.
- sun exposure;
- sun protection
Aim: To describe and investigate the relationship among the sun-related knowledge, attitudes and behaviours of New Zealand primary schoolchildren and consider the roles of sex and school year level.
Methods: A randomly selected, two-stage cluster sample of 488 children from 27 primary schools in five regions of New Zealand was surveyed regarding their sun-related knowledge, attitudes and behaviours. A scoring system was used to assign a knowledge, attitude and behaviour score to each child.
Results: Although knowledge increased with school year level, there was a decline in sun protective attitudes and behaviours. There was little variation in knowledge, attitudes and behaviour between boys and girls, but sex–year level interactions were found for knowledge and behaviour. When considering children's knowledge, attitudes and behaviours simultaneously, knowledge was only significantly associated with behaviours when mediated by attitudes.
Conclusions: When targeting child sun protection and skin cancer prevention programmes, a focus on attitudes towards sun exposure and a suntan may prove beneficial in influencing sun-related behaviours.