Remember, Drowning Is Silent
Sue Hubbard, M.D.
Drowning continues to be the second leading cause of death for children ages 1-19
In the summer, many families create memories and cool down at the beach, lake, or pool. Of course, the main concern is fun, but the first thing that comes to my mind when I think of water is safety.
Knowing that over 900 children between the ages of 1 and 14 drown each year, a discussion of water safety procedures is a necessary part of summer routines. Astoundingly, reports show that 9 out of 10 children who drown are "under supervision."
The AAP has not gone so far as to routinely recommend mandatory swimming lessons for this age group, but does endorse swimming lessons for younger children who are frequently exposed to water and are emotionally and physically able to participate. The AAP does not recommend formal "infant survival swimming lessons" for children under the age of 1 year.
When I discuss water safety with my patients, I emphasize that drowning continues to be the second leading cause of death for children ages 1-19. I often have interesting discussions with parents who have a backyard pool but don't believe it's necessary to install a barrier around the pool. They may claim, "we never let our child outside alone," or their child "is always being supervised by an adult."
As you might expect, these are usually first-time parents who've yet to experience the cunningness of a toddler. Just as our children watch us and learn how to feed themselves, drink from a cup, or climb out of a bed, they also watch us open doors and use a stool to reach something. A toddler is more than capable of figuring out how to open a door, even one with lock, or climb out a window and head straight for the pool.
Drowning is silent. It's not like in the movies, accompanied by screaming and lots of noisy thrashing. The child slips quietly beneath the surface and sinks. It only takes minutes, but the consequences of drowning are devastating. Even for a child who's found and resuscitated, there may be a life-long brain injury. Worst of all, the child may die.
All families with a pool should install a 4-sided fence that's at least 4 feet high to limit pool access. It should be difficult to climb and have a self-latching, self-closing gate. The arguments I hear about "landscape aesthetics" fall on deaf ears. Every family should also know CPR.
Sign your child up for swimming lessons, and have fun practicing flutter kicks and arm strokes together. Just be sure there's an adult within arm's reach of all novices -- and a fence around the pool!
Available at Amazon.com:
- Remember, Drowning Is Silent
- Summertime Can Mean Snakebite
- 6 Summer Illnesses You Need to Know About
- How the New USDA Guidelines Change Your Meals
- Altitude Sickness Usually Mild
- Choose Insect Repellent Carefully
- Kids, Media and Childhood Obesity
- Vegetarian Diet Can Be Safe, Healthy Choice for Children
- Skin Rash Could Be Fifth's Disease
- When are Allergy Medications Appropriate for Kids?
- Cell Phones and Cancer: Get Your Hands Off That Phone!
- Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease Is Back
- The Apple Trick: On Not Tricking Kids into Eating Well
- Viruses Linger During End of School Year
- New Guidelines Aimed at Reducing Overdoses of OTC Medicines
- Earlier Bedtimes May Fend Off Teen Depression
- Teens and Headaches Seem To Go Together
- Medical History Key to Diagnosing Food Allergies
- No More Fever Phobia!
- Iron Deficiency Can Have Serious Consequences
- Pregnancy, Babies and Cats
- Spider Bite or MRSA
- Try These Tips To Control Indoor Allergens
- Steroid Sprays Effective Weapons Against Nasal Allergy Symptoms
- There's No Such Thing As a Sterile Waiting Room
- Allergy Season Has Arrived: Protect Your Kids As Spring Blows In
- Diagnosing Ear Infections Not Always Easy
- Screening Essential To Curb Sudden Cardiac Death in Young Athletes
- ADD Begins in Childhood But Can Continue Into Adulthood
- All About Tonsils
- Improving Children's Digestive Health
- Hand-washing 101: Kill Germs, Don't Spread Them
- Fever May Not Always Warrant a Trip to the Doctor
- Food Allergy or Food Intolerance?
- Your Day-by-day Flu Guide
- Wintertime Upper Respiratory Infection Sends Some Kids to the Hospital
- Stay-happy Tricks for Sick Kids
- Get Your Kids to Trade in Screen Time for Sleep
- Mono and Epstein Barr Virus: What You Need to Know
- Don't Forget Skincare and Sun Protection in Winter
- When to Worry About Stuttering
- Healthy Foods That Make Teeth Rot
- Make Sledding Safety a Priority
- New Research Offers Hope For Eczema Patients
- Why Sarah Palin Is Wrong About Michelle Obama's Weight Gain Fight
- New Iron Recommendations Issued For Children
- Get Smart About Antibiotics
- 8 Ways to Soothe a Sick Kid
- Is It Really That Icky?
- Are Germ-killing Products Harming Your Health?
- Is Cord Blood Banking Worth It?
- Child Born With Hip Dysplasia May Not Need Future Hip Replacement
- Why Vitamin D Is Important For Your Kids
- Safeguard Your Child's Digestive Health
- Goal of Treatment for Alpers' Disease is to Ease Symptoms
- Confusion Reigns Over Cough and Cold Medicines
- Children Can Have Migraine Headaches
- First They Came for My Twinkie ...
- Keeping Lunch Boxes Interesting and Healthy
- Kids Should Drink Milk, Even If It Is Chocolate
- Protect Your Child From Iron Deficiency
- Rare Muscle and Skin Disorder Can Be Difficult to Treat
- The Kid's Doctor: Kids and Choking Dangers
- Pertussis Cases Continue to Rise
- Alternative Treatments To Fight a Cold
- Contact Lenses Appropriate For Kids Old Enough to Handle the Responsibility
- Adverse Effects of Scoliosis Depend on Magnitude of the Curvature
- How to Make Sure Your Kids Eat Enough Vegetables
- Four Loko: Boozy Up-and-Down Makes This Loko Loco
- The Kid's Doctor: Young Athletes and Overuse Injuries
- The Kid's Doctor: Wart Treatments Vary
- Colic -- Although Stressful -- is Temporary
- Healthy Eating Guide to Cereal
- Supplements for High School Athletes: How to Make Smart Choices
- Why Sniffles Hit Hardest at Night
- Child With High Body Mass Index at Increased Risk of Health Problems
- Normal Weight Obesity - A Growing Concern
- Child's Height at Age 2 May Predict Adult Height
- A Parent's Guide to Coughs
- Team up With Schools to Fight Flu Season
- The Dangers of Diagnosing Online
- Family Dinners Help Fight Obesity
- Don't Take Hollywood's Advice on Treating Kids With Head Lice
- Determine Cause of Child's Lack of Growth Before Considering Hormones
- Teach Your Kids to Stress Less
- Common Food Allergies in Kids
- Healthy Lunches Your Kids Will Love Recipe
- Teens' Chronic Headaches Often Fade With Time
- Anxiety Before New School Year is Common for Many Children
- Childhood Obesity From a Holistic Perspective
- Whooping Cough Continues to Affect People of All Ages
- Keep Your Athletes Hydrated On and Off the Field
- Drink Up! Avoiding Dehydration
- How to Stop Your Baby's Wheezing and Prevent Asthma
- Fighting Drugs With the Power of Sleep
- Milk: When the First Food May Be the Best Food
- Introducing New Foods to Your Child
- Coping With Altitude Sickness
- Protecting the Future Health of Our Boys
- The Power of Persuasion: Food Marketing Really Does Work
- Fighting Childhood Obesity From a Holistic Perspective
- Congress Must Act Now to Alleviate Child Hunger
- Exercise for Kids: 5 Tips for Parents
- Too Much Screen Time for Kids Means Poorer Health
- Nutrition May Be Key to Helping Control ADHD
- Foods to Reduce Allergy and Asthma Symptoms in Kids
Copyright © 2011 KIDSDR.COM DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.