UV GARD by SUN-GARD Window Films Offers The Ultimate Protection For Child With Rare Skin Condition
A four year old boy in Kansas requires essential protection from the sun and any ultraviolet (UV) exposure due to an extraordinarily rare and incurable skin disease called Xeroderma Pigmentosum (XP). Peyton Madden’s family is always seeking ways to protect him from the sun so he can enjoy the most basic of everyday activities including playing on the playground at pre-school and watching his sister play softball. His mom, Sarah, has discovered that UV Gard by SUN-GARD offers the protection Peyton needs when fashioned into a specially designed hat for the ultimate guard against damaging UV exposure.
XP is a rare genetic disease where Peyton’s DNA lacks the ability to repair damage from UV light. It causes Peyton to be extremely sensitive to the damaging effects of the sun and other UV radiation sources. XP can lead to the early onset of skin cancer and melanoma. At four, Peyton has already had two skin cancers removed and four pre-melanoma spots removed. Later in the month, he is scheduled to have four more pre-melanomas removed as well as another skin cancer removal.
The main treatment of XP is protection from UV exposure. Peyton’s home and car windows are protected with tinted window film, but he isn’t able to go outside to play like a normal child would. He has to stay in the house until dark before he can go play with his friends. And, in order for Peyton to go outside, whether to play or simply walk from the car to school or a doctor’s appointment, he has to put on long sleeves, jeans, gloves, a jacket, sunglasses and sunscreen. He wears a special hat which provides him with the best protection for his head, face and neck. His mom makes his hats with a template provided by a wonderful support group called XP Family Support Group.
The support group offers guidance, referrals, hat templates, a UV light meter and a UV protective film for use on hats, tents, or for any temporary situation to help protect Peyton. His family has discovered that UV GARD offers strong protection against harmful UV radiation and is also lightweight providing more comfort to Peyton. Sarah has begun creating a variety of styles of hats out of UV Gard by SUN-GARD window films. SUN-GARD films block up to 99% of UV rays and reflect up to 67% of the sun’s heat, offering Peyton the ultimate in protection and comfort for his skin. SUN-GARD donated 50-feet of UV Gard to Peyton’s family so that they can create more hats and devices that allow Peyton to participate in even more activities while staying protected from the sun.
These special hats are made by cutting out approximately eight panels of material with the film hanging in front to protect his face. Sarah doubles the material so that it blocks the most UV light for Peyton’s ultra-sensitive skin. There are four panels on each side to create the back of the hat with each panel of a similar size to the sections of a baseball cap. She then cuts the film to cover the remainder of the front and sides. Material and film is attached to the hat and each other using industrial strength Velcro. By using the Velcro, the film and the hat can be washed separately and the film can be replaced when it becomes scratched. On average, these protective hats last approximately 3 months.
Peyton’s mom says, “Without the hat, he wouldn’t be able to attend daycare because he wouldn’t be safe from the car to the building… nor could he attend doctor appointments or anything else that requires him to go outside.” Sarah also says, “With more film, additional applications can be utilized in order for Peyton to live a more fulfilling life by going to ballgames, watching outdoor activities in a tent, driving around the farm, riding in an airplane, going to the dentist, and many other things we haven’t even thought of yet!”
Peyton is the only person in the state of Kansas known with this uncommon disease and one of only 250 throughout the United States. To learn more about XP and how you can help children like Peyton, please visit the XP Family Support Group. The XP Family Support Group is dedicated to improving the quality of life of those affected with Xeroderma Pigmentosum through education, support services, research of effective treatments, and ultimately finding a cure.