During the current crisis, a lot of people don’t have access to private swimming pools. Many public pools are either closed or not adhering to social distancing rules. So where does this leave parents of small children? For many, small kiddie pools are providing relief in these trying times. That great, but there are also many dangers that parents need to be aware of as they let their little ones play.
Drowning Danger and Kiddie Pools
Drowning is one of the most common causes of death for children in the United States. According to U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
, it takes 60 seconds for an adult to drown. For children, the drowning danger occurs in only 20 seconds. And you don’t need a vast swimming pool or lake for drowning to be a danger. If there is enough water to cover a child’s mouth and nose, it is a serious drowning hazard. Kiddie pools easily hold a few inches of water. Therefore, parents should keep a close eye on their children while they are swimming. Leaving them unsupervised for even a few moments can spell tragedy.
Adult supervision is crucial, even for inflatable kiddie pools. If kids are playing in the water, a focused adult should carefully supervise them the entire time. Don’t bring out a book, your phone or any other form of distraction. You can read our full article about active supervision here
CPR Saves Lives
In case the worst does occur, it pays to be prepared. Being trained in CPR
is an extremely helpful skill. If a child does drown in the kiddie pool, those first moments are critical. Knowing exactly how to act can be the difference between life and death.
Wear Sun Block to Prevent Burns
Okay, this is less of an immediate danger than drowning, but it’s still important. Sun burns hurt and can become very serious if left untreated. In fact, the sun can damage the skin in as little as 15 minutes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
, children who get several sunburns in their youth are more likely to get skin cancer as adults. So even in kiddie pools, make sure everyone is wearing a fresh coat of suntan lotion. The weather is starting to heat up, so be sure to wear sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30. Additionally, be sure to reapply sunscreen as needed. That kiddie pool water will eventually rinse it off. Stay vigilant!
Drink Plenty of Water
If the kids are playing in the sun all day, make sure they’re drinking plenty of water. With kiddie pools or regular pools, it can be easy to forget that we’re sweating away lots of our body’s precious water. This can cause dehydration – even if you’re in the water! For this reason, parents and guardians should encourage frequent breaks to get out of the heat and rehydrate.
Drain the Pool When Not in Use
When your kids are done swimming, deflate and store the pool. You’ll want to eliminate any and all temptation. Let’s face it, kids are curious. While we’re all doing our best to adhere to social distancing rules, they may be pretty bored. Unsupervised kiddie pools will seem very inviting. You don’t want them to go exploring when you aren’t looking and come across a drowning hazard.
To eradicate this extra risk, drain and deflate kiddie pools whenever that are not being used. It can be a pain to reset the pool every time, but it is much better to be safe instead of sorry. Stow it out of sight along with any pool toys you may have been using. Kiddie pools can be a great relief, but they must be treated with responsibility.