Depressive Symptoms and Indoor Tanning Among U.S. Hispanic Adolescents: Results From a Nationally Representative Sample

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Objective: To examine the association between depressive symptoms and indoor tanning among U.S. Hispanic adolescents. Method: Data were collected from the 2015 Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS). In the current study, only Hispanic adolescents were included, which yielded a total weighted sample of 2,667 (men: N = 1,368; women: N = 1,299). Gender was also explored as a moderator in the association between depressive symptoms (sadness or hopelessness and suicidality) and indoor tanning. Logistic regressions were used, with past 12 month indoor tanning behavior (0 vs. 1 or more sessions) entered as the dependent variable. Results: Across gender, sadness or hopelessness was associated with increased odds of indoor tanning (OR = 1.8, 95% CI [1.2, 3.0], p = .01); however, gender significantly moderated the association between suicidality and indoor tanning. Simple slope analyses revealed that suicidality was significantly associated with increased odds of indoor tanning only among boys (OR = 4.0, 95% CI [2.1, 7.5], p = .001) whereas a nonsignificant association was found among girls (OR = 0.8, 95% CI [0.4, 1.8], p = .65). Conclusions: Results suggest there is a differential relationship between suicidality and indoor tanning as function of gender among U.S. Hispanic adolescents. Skin cancer prevention programs for Hispanic youth may wish to consider the role of gender and negative affect in targeted campaigns.

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