5 Tips for Keeping You and Your Children Safe at the Pool This Summer

5 Tips for Keeping You and Your Children Safe at the Pool This Summer

Most of us relish the summertime. Longer, sunnier days mean time spent lazily in and around the pool to stay cool and refreshed. Unfortunately, what begins as fun sometimes ends in tragedy. Accidental drownings are not an uncommon occurrence during the summer. The worst part about them is that they are 100% preventable. You don’t have to compromise your safety for fun this summer. Here are 5 tips for avoiding accidents while still enjoying your summer.

5 Tips to Help Keep You and Your Kids Safe

1. Teach Kids to Swim at an Early Age

One of the most important things that you can do for your children is to teach them pool safety and how to swim and float at an early age. Although the American Academy of Pediatrics used to recommend that you begin swim lessons for your child at the age of four due to their developmental level, more places now offer classes for toddlers and preschoolers from the age of one. There is nothing against starting early.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, drowning is actually the leading cause of death in the pediatric age group, with rates highest among children ages one through two. Not only do swim lessons help children to adjust to the water and learn to enjoy pool time, but these programs also teach them skills that can be utilized for drowning prevention.

2. Install Fences

Most towns and regulations require that you build a fence or a specific type of barrier around all pools. Even if this is not the case, you should still do so in order to increase your child’s safety. Pools should be placed away from the rest of the yard when possible in order to avoid children falling in and all pool fence gates should be self-closing.

3. Supervise Children

Although this may seem obvious to you, for many it is not a given. One of the best ways to prevent accidental drowning is by supervising your children at all times when they are in and around the pool. You should never leave your child unattended. Drowning can happen in only a few inches of water for toddlers and can occur in a matter of seconds for anyone. Be sure to pay attention.

4. Learn CPR

In the case that your child has an accident in or around the pool, learning Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) can be the difference between a child being okay or suffering serious injuries or even death. Numerous programs, including those through the Red Cross, offer CPR training/certification. It is only a few hours of your life and can make all the difference.

5. Only Swim When Conditions Are Safe

No matter how great of a swimmer you or your child is, it is a good rule of thumb to never swim alone. Those who suffer a medical emergency while swimming alone can suffer serious consequences or even death, if there is no one else to help.

It is also important to refrain from running around the pool deck or to dive headfirst into any pool that is not at least eight feet deep. Children should refrain from diving at all unless given permission by an adult. Try to only visit public pools when a lifeguard is on duty, and never swim under the influence of drugs or alcohol, as it can hinder your coordination and judgment.

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