Healthcast: Swimming Safety


Drowning is the number one cause of death for children between 1 and 4 years old.

That’s why it’s important for you and your kids to be extra careful around the water whether it’s at a neighborhood pool, the lake, or even in your own backyard.

“You have to make sure that you are right there with your kid,” said Dr. Amy Thompson.

Dr. Thompson is the CEO of Covenant Children’s Hospital. 

She says it doesn’t take long for a fun day at the pool to become a tragedy.

“It can happen within 10 seconds and so when you think of how short of a time 10 seconds is that’s enough time for a kid to be submerged,” Dr. Thompson explained.

Dr. Thompson says it’s a good idea to designate someone as a water watcher.

This person should always has their eyes on the water, no matter what.

“Don’t answer your cell phone and don’t leave just to go answer your front door and don’t be distracted with other things that are happening outside of the pool,” explained Dr. Thompson. “Your job is to watch your kids in the pool and make sure that they are safe.”

It’s also a good idea to have children, no matter the age, take swimming lessons.

Adults should too. 

And if you have plans to go to the lake make sure you and everyone you’re with has a life jacket on.

“In a big body of water everyone should have a life jacket on including adults,” Dr. Thompson said. “You can just get into trouble without knowing it and things can happen really fast.”

And never swim alone, no matter how old you are. 

“We have a pool at our house and we have a rule that no one swims alone including my husband and I,” explained Dr. Thompson. “We just have a rule that if you are in the pool there are at least two of you in the pool and I just think thats a great philosophy to have.”

It’s also a good idea to empty all tubs, buckets, containers, and kiddie pools immediately after use. Store them upside down so they don’t collect water. 

And know what to do in an emergency. 

Learning CPR and basic water rescue skills could help save a life.

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