Maternal/female caregiver influences on adolescent indoor tanning

Jo Ellen Stryker, DeAnn Lazovich, Jean Forster, Karen M. Emmons, Glorian Sorensen, Marie France Demierre

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Purpose To identify aspects of maternal/female caregiver (MFC) influences on adolescents' indoor tanning, including modeling, cognitions (MFC knowledge and attitudes about indoor tanning), and gatekeeping/monitoring (MFC permissiveness and concern) of indoor tanning. Methods A telephone survey of adolescents aged 14-17 years and their female parent/caregiver in Minnesota and Massachusetts was conducted in 2000-2001 (n = 1284 matched pairs). Logistic regression was used to obtain odds ratios for relationships between measures of MFC influence and teens' indoor tanning practices, adjusting for demographic and sun sensitivity differences. Results Separately, each of the five MFC influence variables was significantly associated with adolescents' indoor tanning practices. In a multivariate model, significant independent contributors were parents' behavior, parents' concern about their children's indoor tanning practices, and MFC permissiveness of teen indoor tanning. Using a combined summed scale of the 5 influence factors, there was a monotonically increasing likelihood of tanning with each incremental scale increase: (in comparison to none, 1 factor aOR = 4.1, 95% CI: 1.3, 12.8; any 2 factors aOR = 8.3, 95% CI: 2.8, 24.6; any 3 factors aOR = 14.3, 95% CI = 4.9, 41.8; any 4 factors aOR = 30.5, 95% CI: 10.3, 90.3; all 5 factors aOR = 66.0, 95% CI: 20.0, 217.6). Conclusions Mothers/female caregivers may be a powerful influence on their teenagers' indoor tanning use, and are an important target for future health promotion efforts to discourage youth indoor tanning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)528.e1-528.e9
JournalJournal of Adolescent Health
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2004

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by grant number CA79593 from the National Institutes of Health to Jean L. Forster. Jo Ellen Stryker is currently at the Department of Speech Communication, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. We thank Andrea Hickle and Natania Remba for their work as project directors.

Copyright 2018 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Adolescents
  • Health promotion
  • Parents
  • Skin cancer prevention
  • Skin neoplasms/prevention and control
  • Ultraviolet rays/adverse effects

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