Water Safety Tips: Help Your Kids Beat the Heat and Stay Safe
Swimming is a great way for kids to cool off and have fun during the summer months, but drowning is a real danger. Below are some tips from Joseph Grubenhoff, M.D., emergency medicine, Children's Hospital Colorado, on how to keep your kids safe in the water.
- Pool Safety: Inflatable flotation devices such as vests, water wings, rafts, and tubes can give a false sense of security in the pool and are not effective in protecting a child from drowning. Never use these as a substitute for constant adult supervision.
- Beach Safety: Never let your child swim alone. Children require constant supervision.
- Water Park Safety: Read all of the signs before your child goes on a ride. Make sure they are old enough, tall enough, and don't have any of the medical conditions that are listed.
- Lake, Stream and Pond Safety: Jagged rocks, broken bottles, or trash may be hidden under the water so make sure your child wears something to protect their feet.
- Boat Safety: According to Dr. Grubenhoff, parents should wear lifejackets and make it mandatory for their children to wear their lifejackets when they are boating. Theoretically, children are more likely to wear their protective equipment if they see their parents modeling the behavior.
- Household Safety: Never leave a baby or toddler unattended in the bath. If you must answer the telephone or door, don't rely on an older sibling to watch the baby; wrap the child in a towel and bring him or her with you.
- It's important for adults to learn how to perform CPR especially if they live in a neighborhood where there is a creek or a stream flowing through.
- Children should be supervised while swimming by at least one adult who is not distracted by other things. Accidents happen when people are not watching their children closely.
Listen to a recent interview with Dr. Joseph Grubenhoff. (Look for the title beginning with "WATER SAFETY.")