7 Ways to Keep Kids Safe Around Water
It’s no surprise that the first rule of water safety is knowing how to swim. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends children learn to swim between 1 and 4 years old. Swim lessons do not provide “drown-proofing” for children of any age, so supervision and other layers of protection are necessary even for children who have learned swimming skills. Adults who never learned can find more options for lessons than ever before at community pools and the YMCA. Why not make the call today and schedule a class?
Even if you’re a good swimmer, accidents happen. As we prepare for pool parties and picnics at the lake, it’s a good idea to review water safety tips.
Safety for Kids
- Adults should supervise children constantly around any body of water, even if lifeguards are on duty. Never leave them at the beach or a public pool without a responsible adult you can trust to supervise them.
- Because drowning occurs quickly and quietly, avoid distractions (yes, cell phones too) when you’re supervising little ones around water.
- If a child goes missing, check the water first. Seconds count.
- You should be close enough to touch a pre-school child who is in the water.
- Teach children to ask permission every time they go in the water.
- Don’t expect floats or foam toys to take the place of life jackets. They’re not designed to keep swimmers safe.
- Don’t let kids or any swimmers hold their breath for long periods of time underwater. They could pass out and drown.
About the Author
Hilary McCormick, MD is a pediatrician at the Tim and Carolyn Rice Center for Child and Adolescent Health