Blog-HandtheHoodie

Recently a passionate melanoma awareness advocate by the name of Donna Piunt (read her My Story feature here) reached out to us for help on an awareness campaign she wanted to launch entitled “Hand the Hoodie.” Donna is passionate about raising awareness of pediatric melanoma, an epidemic whose rate has been increasing, and has chosen to do this by having the hand prints of pediatric melanoma warriors across the Nation placed on our UV Skinz Pullover Hoodie. When Donna reached out to us to let us know she felt our UV Skinz Kids Pullover Hoodie was perfect for the campaign, we were humbled, and eager to help anyway we could!

We sent Donna some of our UV Skinz Hoodies, and the first hoodie is currently headed to its 9th warrior for another small but powerful handprint placed in honor of raising awareness. The reasoning behind this campaign is simple, but powerful. The participant is to take their photo with the hoodie and post to their (our their parents’) blog, Facebook page, or wherever it is they raise awareness, with the intent to get people talking about pediatric melanoma! Although melanoma accounts for only 4% of skin cancers, it is responsible for 80% of skin cancer deaths and cumulative UV exposure during childhood is a major contributory factor in development of skin cancer. These facts together highlight the absolute necessity of taking preventative measures and protecting children from prolonged and/or intense UV exposure.

*To show our support for Donna’s campaign we are offering 15% off our Kid’s Pullover Hoodies with coupon code HANDTHEHOODIE. 

Sun-safe clothing (12)A few brave warriors participating in the Hand the Hoodie Campaign

Here are some Sun-Safe Guidelines to follow when playing outdoors during peak hours of the day:

  • Cover your children with sun protective clothing as well as a wide brimmed hat of at least 3 inches and 99-100% UV protective sunglasses

  • Keep infants younger than 6 months out of direct sunlight. If this is unavoidable make sure they are completely covered from head to toe with protective clothing including a wide brimmed sun hat and sunglasses

  • For children older than 6 months apply a broad spectrum sunscreen of at least 30 SPF 20 min before exposure to all exposed areas and re-apply every 2 hours or immediately after swimming and sweating (remember, there’s no such thing as “waterproof” sunscreen, only “water-resistant”)

  • Limit sun exposure and seek the shade during peak UV hours, typically between 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m

  • Be aware that UV reflection from water, sand, cement, and snow can increase your exposure substantially

Another vital reality regarding pediatric melanoma is the importance of early detection. Melanomas in adults generally follow the ABCDE clinical rule, however melanomas in children often do not, and are sometimes red, pink, white, raised, and/or have regular borders. As a result, these ‘marks’ can be mistaken for common childhood rashes, so it is important that parents check their children’s skin regularly for anything out of the ordinary and see a certified dermatologist with any concerns over a developing skin lesion.

TAKE-HOME MESSAGES

    • The incidence of melanoma in children and adolescents is on the rise

    • Long-term sun exposure is the primary risk factor of pediatric melanoma

    • Sun-safety education and implementing sun-safe habits and protection efforts are key components of prevention

    • Always be aware of abnormal or evolving spots or marks on your child’s skin, and get anything suspicious checked out by a dermatologist

To learn more about the Hand the Hoodie Campaign, to share photos of warriors, or find out how you can get involved please visit Donna’s Facebook page, The Cancer SPOT.

Additional resources:

MD Anderson Cancer Center
Melanoma Research Foundation
Addison’s Army Against Melanoma
AIM at Melanoma