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Safety & Prevention

5 Water Safety Tips for Kids of All Ages

  1. Protect your new baby from water hazards around the home


    ​Drowning can happen to any family. It's quick, and it's silent. Never—even for a moment—leave young children alone or in the care of another child while in or near bathtubs, pools, spas, wading pools, irrigation ditches, ponds, or other standing water. During swim times, designate a "Water Watcher" – an adult who will stay within arm's reach to children in the water.

  2. Protect your curious toddler


    ​Little kids are curious; and that's a wonderful thing! Nurture their curiosity AND make sure they stay safe by keeping them within arm's reach at all times whenever you're around water.  But remember, water safety is not just about pools! Kids can drown in as little as 1 inch of water. Installing bathroom door locks and toilet latches, and emptying all buckets, pools and tubs helps keep curious little ones safe.

  3. Start swimming lessons early


    ​Every child should learn how to swim. When to start swimming lessons is an individual decision for parents, based on their child's development. Talk with your pediatrician about whether your child is developmentally ready. And remember, even with swim lessons, other drowning prevention measures are still needed!

  4. Help your teen be water smart


    ​When it comes to water safety, be a good role model for your teen! That means always wearing life jackets when boating and making sure your teen understands how using alcohol and drugs increases the risk of drowning.

  5. Make safety a priority if you own a swimming pool


    ​Do you have a pool at home? Pool alarms and rigid pool covers may provide some layers of protection, but they are not enough. The most effective drowning prevention strategy is a 4-sided fence that is at least 48 inches tall, with self-closing and self-latching gates that completely separates the pool from the house.

Last Updated
American Academy of Pediatrics (Copyright @ 2019)
The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.
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