There’s almost nothing more exciting to a child then a carefree day at the beach or the pool. The same daytrip however, may be a slightly more nerve-wracking experience for a parent. The child development professionals at Celebree Learning Centers provide ways to ensure pool safety with your children this summer.
The summer season comes with sprouting freckles, smells of sunscreen and endless memories. When it comes to the pool or the beach, there are many ways to keep your children safe while still having fun and enjoying yourselves. Put your worries at bay with these helpful pointers.
- Stay close to your children. Never leave your children alone in or near the water as the supervision from a responsible adult is one of many ways to prevent drowning. According to KidsHealth, young children are especially at risk near pools and other small bodies of water, as it is possible to drown in less than two inches of water. When children under age 5 are in or around water, it’s especially important that an adult who knows how to swim and perform CPR is within an arm’s length, otherwise known as “touch supervision.”
- Have the right equipment. Keep rescue gear close by. Items such as a life preserver, shepherd’s hook and working cell phone are worth considering. Although popular, inflatable swimming aids or “floaties,” are not the best choice for your new swimmer. Choosing the right-sized life preserver for your child is safer alternative when going in the pool, lake or ocean. Lastly, the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission states several requirements for safety barriers for residential pools, which can be found here.
- Consider swim lessons. It is ultimately the parent’s decision whether or not a child should enroll in swim lessons, based on the child’s developmental readiness and desire to learn. However, it is important that parents do not assume that swim lessons are a way to prevent drowning. Even the most experienced swimmers can find themselves in difficult situations, so it is important that an adult keeps a close eye on the children and remains prepared for anything.
- Prepare for open water. Be sure that there is a lifeguard, or other experienced rescue personnel on duty when you take your young swimmers to the beach. Also ensure that the experienced and inexperienced young swimmers alike know not to dive into water, as this can cause substantial injury.
- Teach your children about fast water. It is best to avoid letting your children swim in canals or fast moving water altogether. However, it is important to teach them the appropriate measures to take if they get caught in a riptide or unexpected current. For example, explain that they should swim parallel to shore until they escape a current, and then proceed to swim back to shore.
- Practice safety against the sun. For infants younger than 6 months, try to avoid direct sunlight. Other children should be dressed in light and loose-fitting clothing and wear a sunhat or baseball cap with a brim that blocks the sun. Limit sun exposure between the times of 10 A.M. and 4 P.M., or when the UV Index Scale suggests greatest UV exposure. Apply strong SPF sunscreen at least 30 minutes prior to going outside and be sure to reapply several times throughout the day. Sunscreen should be applied even on cloudy days.
- Know what to do in an emergency. If you cannot find your child, always check the water first, then the surrounding area. It is critical to know how and when to call 9-1-1, or your local emergency number. According to WebMD, call 9-1-1 if your child has problems breathing or has stopped breathing as a result of being immersed or submerged in liquid; or if they have had a near drowning episode.
There are many precautions parents can take to ensure their children’s safety in the summer. By following these 7 steps, you can make the most of this summer while staying safe and prepared. For more information on summer safety, contact the child development professionals at Celebree Learning Centers today.