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Splash into Summer with these Pool Safety Tips

Author: CHKD Medical Group
Published Date: Tuesday, May 30, 2017

By Dr. Stephen Restaino, General Academic Pediatrics

Swimming is a fun, healthy summer activity, but pool safety is a must. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, drowning is the number one cause of accidental death in children between the ages of 1 and 4. Whenever children of any age are in a pool, an adult that knows how to swim should supervise them at all times - paying close attention without distractions. For infants, toddlers and any children who are not swimmers, an adult should be in the pool providing “touch supervision,” meaning they are within arm’s reach of the child.

But pool safety doesn’t just apply to swimming sessions. If you have a pool or are visiting a home that does, how can you help ensure your child is safe even when they aren’t swimming?

  • Check the fence – The pool should be completely surrounded by a fence that is well-maintained, self-closing and self-latching. The fence should be at least 4 feet high and should not be easy to climb. Make sure there are no items near the fence that can be used to climb over it such as lawn chairs or other outdoor furniture.
  • Establish pool rules - Set rules for your child to follow that apply to any pool time. For example, there should be no running or riding toys of any kind near the pool. Do not allow children to dive off the side of the pool, and always enter a pool feet first, especially when going in for the first time.
  • Watch for poolside items - Keep all toys away from the pool when the pool is not in use. Never have electrical appliances such as blenders or air pumps near the pool. Have a U.S. Coast Guard- approved life preserver near the pool that can be thrown to a child in the water if needed.
  • Know CPR – All parents should learn infant and child CPR. Proper training in this first-aid technique can make a lifesaving difference until emergency help arrives. Check with your pediatrician or the American Red Cross for information about an approved CPR course in your area.


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About CHKD Medical Group

Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters has been the region’s most trusted name in pediatric care for more than 50 years. As members of CHKD Health System, our pediatricians work closely with CHKD’s full range of pediatric specialists and surgeons. They also share a commitment to quality, excellence and child-centered care. With 18 practices in 29 locations throughout the region, a CHKD pediatrician is never far.

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