Warmer weather sends many people into the water for a refreshing dip, which makes summer a high time for drowning incidents. Although most drownings happen in residential pools, children can drown in less than two inches of water. Learn the facts and follow our swimming safety tips to keep you and your children safe and healthy this summer.
Research shows that drowning deaths are down overall in the U.S. They dropped 9% over the 10-year study period concluded in 2010. Despite the overall downward trend, drowning deaths are still a major problem among distinct age groups. Those older than age 85 have one of the highest death rates from drowning, and many adults drown in natural water settings such as lakes and rivers. Younger children, especially boys between ages 1 and 4, are more likely to drown in a pool over the weekend.
If children and adolescents are around bodies of water on a regular basis, parents and/or caretakers should learn cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
In case of emergencies, CPR can save lives, reduce the severity of injury and improve the chance of survival. The majority of those who survive being submerged in water without brain damage are discovered within 2 minutes. Most who die are discovered after 10 minutes.
CPR training is available through the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association and at your nearest CHI St. Luke’s Health hospital or fire department.
Swimming Safety Tips
You can also keep drowning deaths down by following these water safety tips:
- Learn how to swim. Formal swim lessons can reduce the risk of drowning for you and family members. In one study, researchers said that such lessons lowered the chance of drowning by 88% in children younger than age 5.
- Do not assume your child can swim. Many youngsters forget how to swim when panicked.
- Swim with a buddy. It’s also best to avoid swimming in places that don’t have a lifeguard on duty.
- Other helpful devices include pool alarms, door or gate alarms, and automatic pool covers that cover the pool completely. You can increase the safety of your child when you use these with pool fencing. Also, make sure there is no standing water on the pool cover.
Share these swimming safety tips with friends and family. Baylor St. Luke’s Emergency Centers are located in Greater Houston and surrounding areas to help you in any emergency. Find your nearest location so you know where to go when minutes matter.