Drowning is one of the leading causes of death in young children. Even though we are entering the final month of summer for many places, it will likely remain extremely hot for much of the country. It doesn’t take much for a small child to drown, so teaching water safety to your children is one of the most important lessons you can teach your children this summer or any summer.
Teaching water safety to your children is vital no matter where you live!
Never go near the water without an adult
Wear a life jacket.Life jackets should always be worn while in a boat, raft, inner tube or on a dock. This is a vital part of teaching water safety to your children. If a child cannot swim or is an inexperienced swimmer, life jackets should always be utilized while in the water. Life jackets should be properly fitted in order to keep your child’s head and face above water. Remember, life jackets only work when they are worn, so make sure your child gets in the routine of putting one on every time they get near the water. Important: As fun as water wings and inflatable toys are for children, they don’t provide the same support as a U.S. Coastguard approved life jacket.
Learn how to swim.Swimming lessons have been shown to reduce drowning incidents, which is why the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children ages 4 and older learn to swim. Even if your child has taken swimming lessons, never assume that their risk of drowning has subsided. Always be cautious of pool floats or toys that could interfere with your child in the water. Learning how to swim should be a fun activity, promoting aquatic awareness and minimizing intimidation. To find swimming lessons in your area, contact your local YMCA, American Red Cross, American Heart Association, city facilities, or swim school.
If there is an emergency, call 9-1-1 or find an adult.Although a child may have had swimming lessons or is utilizing a life jacket, sometimes water accidents do happen. Make sure your child knows to call for help or find an adult when trouble occurs. When watching a child swim, always make sure to have a cordless phone nearby in order to call 911 if a dangerous situation arises. Stress the importance of staying away from pool drains and suction fittings so your child can have a fun and safe swimming experience.