Three Water Safety Rules to Share with Children

Help put a stop to swimming accidents by communicating rules to your kids.

We love to watch our children splash and play, but swimming also comes with the risk of drowning. The following rules apply to pools, the beach or any other body of water, including the bathtub.

Rule #1: Never approach water without an alert adult. Explain to your child that permission is required before going near water. Ideally, the observing adult is acquainted with CPR and other life saving procedures, as with a lifeguard. The Red Cross provides adults with first aid classes across the country.

Rule #2: Trust yourself and listen to your body. Tell your child that if he or she feels unusually hot or tired, or if a condition of the water puts their safety in jeopardy even a little, to move away from the water, even if other kids don't. Bad weather, strong currents, high waves, allergies, insect stings, the presence of snakes or unexpected muscle injuries are all good reasons to leave the water site. If buoys or ropes designate where people can or cannot swim, teach your child to pay attention and obey.

Rule #3: Stay alert in case of an emergency. Sit down with your child and review how to use rescue equipment kept near most pools and many natural bodies of water. Life preserver rings and life vests are especially important. Make sure your child always wears a life jacket while riding in a boat or other moving water vehicle. Discuss how to remain calm in dangerous situations and show them how to help someone who's struggling.

Remember, modeling proper pool behavior is the best way to impart safety rules to your children. In the event of an emergency, Denton Regional Medical Center's Emergency Care Center offers advanced diagnoses and treatment. To learn more about our services, visit us online or give us a call at 1-855-477-DRMC (3762) for a physician referral.

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