Now, I’m not trying to be controversial here. I am FULLY aware that sunscreen is an important part of growing up in New Zealand (and in other countries) where there is a high level of skin cancers and strong UV rays. I have had a debate this morning however with a few teachers at my kids school about them liberally applying sunscreen to my children.
And THIS I don’t agree with.
Luckily for me, one of my sons teachers remembered that he had a reaction to the ‘school’ sunscreen last year, and didn’t put it on him yesterday, whereas many of the other young children did get it applied to them, including my youngest son, who also has reactions to chemicals on his skin.
I don’t know how I feel about having to constantly be vigilant to this, and have made it clear in the school office this morning that my children are allergic to sunscreen and that I will be applying it at home before they go to school.
The funny part of this though is that my kids didn’t really understand why I put sunscreen only on their arms. To me it was obvious that they have to wear hats at school so there wasn’t a need to put it on their faces, and even if they took their hats off to participate in the sprint practice for Athletics before they put their hats back on, then they wouldn’t get burnt, and a bit of Vitamin D wouldn’t go amiss. My eldest son, didn’t know what Vitamin D was, or why it was important, and wondered out loud, if “too much Vitamin D is what gives you sunburn” …
So the conversation became much more complicated than I was anticipating, and also pointed out to me clearly that my kids have a very one-sided view of sunburn and what causes it.
It is also obvious to me, that not all sunscreen is made the same, and just like I am careful of what my children eat, and the other chemicals they come into contact with, I am also quite particular in what sunscreen is applied to their skin.
But, am I in the minority here? Or do parents not realise that sunscreen is sometimes applied to their kids while they are at school?
I’d love to hear your thoughts…