Keeping Your Kids Safe Around Water

A family standing by the water.
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Most kids love water, but you'll want to be sure they stay safe while they're swimming.  If you incorporate these helpful tips, you and your family can enjoy splishing and splashing while also lowering your risk for a water-related accident.

Tips for Parents

Follow these important safety guidelines to make sure that your kids don't have an accident around water.

  • Make sure that whenever they're swimming, children are supervised.
  • Install a secure gate around your pool or spa at home to make sure that your kids don't wander into the area without an adult.
  • If you go boating, make sure that you have a U.S. Coast Guard-approved Personal Flotation Device for every passenger on board.
  • Enroll your kids in swimming lessons to teach them how to be comfortable and not panic in the water.
  • Always swim in areas that are monitored and avoid taking the plunge in ponds or canals that don't have a lifeguard and could have hazardous wildlife.
  • Be mindful when your young children are in the bathtub, and never leave them unsupervised.  It doesn't take a lot of water to have a scary near-drowning incident.
  • Enroll in a CPR class and keep the number of your local Emergency Medical Service saved in your phone.  Although you never want to use them, it's always a good idea to have the skills needed in case of an emergency.

Tips for Children

Teach your kids these water safety habits to help them be safe when they're enjoying the summer sun.

  • Always swim with a buddy so that you're never alone if you need help.
  • Unless a grown-up says, it's okay, never jump or dive into a body of water.  It's safer to wade in if you don't know how deep it is.
  • Have fun, but don't roughhouse when you're swimming.  Jumping on top of someone or pushing them down isn't nice, and it could lead to a scary situation.
  • Know what to do if something goes wrong.  Tell an adult and call for help right away.

Don't forget, although swimming pools are where most of the submersion injuries that come into the Emergency Room occur, it only takes an inch of water for a child to drown. Keep an eye on little ones and follow these safety precautions, and you can significantly reduce the chances of something going wrong.

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