Mediating Variables in a Parent Based Intervention to Reduce Skin Cancer Risk in Children

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The present study examined theoretical mediators of a parent-based intervention on sunbathing tendencies and sunburn frequencies based on the work of Turrisi et al. [Turrisi, R., Hillhouse, J., Heavin, S., Robinson, J., Adams, M., & Berry, J. (2004). Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 27, 393-412.]. Three hundred and forty parents in two regions of the United States were educated about the dangers of risky sun behavior and how to convey information about skin cancer prevention to their children. Attitudes toward sunbathing, health beliefs, appearance beliefs, and social normative beliefs were examined and found to be significant mediators of program effects on sunbathing tendencies and sunburn frequencies. The findings are discussed with respect to maximizing the effectiveness of future skin cancer interventions with children.