5 Essential Summer Water Safety Tips For Parents
The school year is coming to an end, and summer fun is just around the corner! There’s nothing better than jumping in the pool or splashing in the ocean waves on a hot, sunny day, but there are some safety essentials that parents should go over with their children before anyone jumps in.
Always Be Within Arms Reach Of Children
First and most importantly, never leave a child unattended in or around the water. Stay within arm's reach of young children at all times and keep a close eye on older children who may be more confident in the water. Parents should never assume that someone else is watching their child, and they should always stay alert and attentive when their child is in the water.
Use Proper Floatation Devices
For children who are not confident swimmers, use flotation devices, such as life jackets or floaties. Parents should make sure that these devices are properly fitted and are appropriate for their child's age, weight, and swimming ability. It is also important to note that flotation devices are not a substitute for adult supervision, and children should never be left unattended in the water, even if they are wearing a life jacket.
Wear Bright Colors
Avoid swimsuits or life jackets in colors that are any shade of blue, green, tan, or black as they are difficult to see under the water. Children should wear swimsuits and other water gear in bright, highly visible colors like yellow, orange, hot pink, or red. These colors make it easier for adults to spot children in the water, even from a distance. Additionally, avoid complicated patterns or designs that may be difficult to see in the water, like a black-and-white checkered pattern. Make sure that any flotation devices or other safety equipment are also highly visible.
Set Clear Rules And Boundaries About Water Time
Set clear rules and boundaries around water safety. These might include not running or jumping into the pool, not swimming alone, not going near the water without an adult present, and not getting into the water without asking an adult first. Parents should also teach their children how to identify hazards in and around the water, such as strong currents, underwater obstacles, fishing nets, and local or aquatic wildlife.
Teach Children Lifesaving Techniques If They Fall Into Water
Ideally, all children would be taught to swim at an early age. Not only do swim lessons teach the most important fundamentals to keep kids from drowning, but they also help kids to feel more comfortable and confident in the water. However, if you can't get your children into swim lessons, there are still some basic things you can teach them in case they ever fell into a pool, wiped out in a wave, or slid off their water tube.
- Stay calm and try to stay afloat: Find something to hold onto, such as a buoy, a floating object, or the side of a pool if you can. Kick your legs in a scissor-like motion to help keep your head above water and propel yourself towards safety.
- Call for help: Don’t be afraid to shout out for help. Scream as loudly as you can until someone comes to your aid.
- Roll on your back and tilt your head back: If you are struggling to keep your head above water, or you’re feeling tired treading water, try rolling onto your back and relax. Keep your arms and legs outstretched to help you stay balanced. Keeping your head back will also make it easier to breathe.
By supervising children closely, ensuring that they wear appropriate safety gear, and setting clear water rules, parents can help prevent water-related accidents and ensure their children have fun and safe experiences in the water. Water safety is an ongoing process, and parents should remain vigilant and proactive in promoting water safety at all times. By doing so, you can help keep your children safe and happy while enjoying all the fun and benefits that water has to offer.