Time to hit the pool! Make sure you keep your little ones safe — memorize the following essential swim-smart tips from Safe Kids USA.
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Eyes & Attention
Never turn your back on a child while she’s in the water — not even for a moment.
Lifeguards Are Your Best Friend
Swim only when a lifeguard is on duty, but continue to keep your eyes on your child. Lifeguards must monitor many little swimmers at once; don’t assume they’ll always be watching yours.
Keep a hand on babies and toddlers at all times while in the pool. Even strong swimmers under 5 should always be within arm’s reach of an adult.
No Dunking Allowed!
Never dunk a child under 3 — little kids can swallow large amounts of water, which could be dangerous. Moreover, the experience might actually increase your little one’s fear of swimming.
Teach Safety Basics
Teach your child the safety basics by the time he’s a toddler. This should include rules like not running near the pool and never going in or near the water without an adult, as well as how to reach for a pole or a line that’s thrown to him if he’s ever struggling in the water.
Learn to perform CPR on a child. Take a class through your local YMCA or American Red Cross chapter.
Originally published in the June 2010 issue of Parents magazine.
For Additional Information
Check out our great swimming and water safety tips:
- Helping Kids Learn to Love Swimming
- Tips for a Healthy Day at the Beach
- Teach Your Child to Swim
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