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Promoting a healthy lifestyle is one thing that parents can do to protect their children for a lifetime. Young children mimic their parent’s good and bad behaviors. Children’s Melanoma Prevention Foundation (CMPF) targets parents both in school and in the community to educate them about skin cancer prevention. In school, we provide programs at Parent Teacher Organization events and at school health fairs. In the community, we reach parents at the dozens of events that we participate in each year including Boston Harbor Island events, Touch a Boat, YMCA Health Kid’s event, etc.

We provide information regarding understanding the factors that affect UV radiation and sun damage, as well as proper sunscreen use, and the value of sun protective clothing. We use the same innovative technology with parents, as we do with their children. UV photography has been proven to raise awareness and improve sun protection behaviors, providing the best snapshot of personal sun damage and proper sunscreen application. We teach parents that the risk of sunburn is greater in May than August, proper sunscreen use requires extreme diligence, and that a swim shirt is a better method of sun protection especially in the water.

SSMC WarhaftigDr. Jeremy Warhaftig, a board certified pediatrician and CMPF board member helped us to develop an educational resource just for new parents. As a pediatrician and parent of three fair skinned children he has learned that it takes a lot of effort to protect children from sun damage. He believes that many chronic conditions that affect adults have their onset in the habits that are established in childhood. Proper sun protection behaviors are no exception. He is passionate about prevention and brought our “Outdoor Babyproofing” initiative to his Pediatric Department at South Shore Medical Center last May for Melanoma Awareness month. His staff provided 100 families with a program bookmark and a SnapperRock infant swim shirt donated by a leading producer of sun protection clothing for children.

Because newborns have very special sun protection needs, we adapted our SunAWARE message to include specific messages for newborns. 
SunAWARE for Infants
Avoid direct and reflected sunlight especially between 10 am and 4 pm.
Wrap baby's eyes with sunglasses, cover all skin with appropriate clothing, including a wide brimmed hat, long sleeves, and pants or leggings.
As a last resort, and after testing on a small patch of skin, apply broad-spectrum SPF30+ sunscreen to areas that cannot be otherwise protected, selecting products that contain zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.
Remember to check the UV Index before going outdoors. UV levels can be surprisingly high on cool and cloudy days.
Educate everyone who cares for your infant that they can develop sunburns more easily than older babies and suffer from severe consequences including dehydration, fever, and skin infections.

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1-781-875-1SPF (1773)

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75 Washington Street

Norwell, MA 02061

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