When it comes to drowning, we know the basics about supervising children while they're swimming and making sure they wear life jackets on boats. What's scary is how much we don't know about (or don't think about) the other ways children drown.
Sadly nearly every day children die from drownings that could, in many cases, be prevented. Here are five drowning dangers you may not have considered, but should:
Kiddie pools kill -- You don't have to have a huge pool in your backyard to put your child at risk of drowning. In fact, a new study shows that small kiddie pools -- the cheap ones you pick up at the grocery store or mall -- are responsible for at least one drowning every five days during summer months. That's comparable to the rate of drownings that happen in in-ground pools.
Drowning doesn't look like drowning -- I've been haunted by this article about what a drowning child looks like since I read it. Most children don't make splashing noises and look like they're in distress, rather it's silent and quick. In fact, more than half of children that drown do so within 25 feet of a parent or other adult. That is chilling.
Swim caps can save lives -- Recently in the U.K. a 7-year-old girl nearly drowned after her hair became caught in a swimming pool vent. She was saved only when her grandfather ripped a chunk of hair from her head after she'd been trapped under water for more than two and a half minutes. While it sounds like there was a problem with the pool in this case, you can never be too careful with long hair that can get tangled.
Kids can drown AFTER they get out of the water -- This is another one that has freaked me out ever since I heard about it -- the dry drowning. Although it's rare, there are cases in which children ingest water while they're swimming or bathing and appear fine for awhile, but die hours later. Knowing the signs is the best form of prevention.
Kids can drown in ANY water -- From fish tanks to toilets, buckets to septic tanks, if there are even a few inches of water, a child can drown. Be sure you are aware of ALL sources of water in and near your home and wherever your children go.
What precautions do you take to keep your children safe from drowning?
Image via sneakerdog/Flickr