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Revista Brasileira de Medicina do Esporte

Print version ISSN 1517-8692

Abstract

BAKOS, Renato Marchiori et al. Sunburns and sun habits in a group of Brazilian athletes. Rev Bras Med Esporte [online]. 2006, vol.12, n.5, pp. 275-278. ISSN 1517-8692.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1517-86922006000500010.

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the knowledge and sun protection habits of a group of Brazilian athletes. Sunburns are considered the main environmental risk factor for melanoma, especially before the age of 20. Most of professional athletes are young individuals intensively exposed to sunlight in their activities and leisure as well, being therefore susceptible to sunburns. METHODS: During the XIV Pan-American Games, 115 Brazilian athletes answered to a questionnaire on sunburn during training and leisure; phototype; use of sunscreen (USS); importance of sun protection (ISP) and place of practice (indoors x outdoors). RESULTS: The majority was outdoor (73%), and 59% had light phototype (I, II or III). Comparing the athletes by their practicing place, outdoors presented higher rates of sunburn episodes, ISP and USS during their training periods, while in leisure the groups did not show any difference. Grouped by phototypes, athletes with lighter skin complexion presented more sunburn episodes in both training and leisure. In multivariate analysis for sunburn risk, light phototypes and ISP were statistically significant. CONCLUSIONS: Outdoor sports modalities give origin to more sunburn in their athletes. However, during leisure, both outdoor and indoor athletes present similar sun habits, evidencing that in this moment they form a homogeneous group regarding sun light exposure. Athletes with lighter phototypes are more prone to sunburns in both leisure and training. The rates of sunscreen use are lower than the recommendation. Sun protection should be stimulated in both sports and leisure activities in Brazilian athletes.

Keywords : Brazil; Sunburn; Sports.

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