Thursday, June 12, 2008
Preventing Child Drownings
We had our first official day at the beach yesterday. We went with a friend of mine who also has a little girl who is 2 1/2. My daughter had the best time. I'm so proud of her and her new swimming abilities. She can almost swim with the life vest off. I'm hoping by next year she will be able to keep herself a float. Though I'm not sure I will let her go in the water without the life vest until she is 30. LOL! I think I'd like to glue it on to her. She seems to have absolutely no fear of the water. This really scares me. We started teaching her to swim the following summer after she was born. She was only 8 months old and swimming with mommy and daddy in the lake. My mother taught my sister and I to swim at an early age also. We were both swimming by the time we were both 3 years old. My husband and I own a 17 foot ski boat, have a family cottage on the lake and also have a pool in our back yard. So, yes mommy and daddy are always a little scared for our daughters safety. We decided it was best to teach her to swim as soon as possible. At first our daughter was terrified of the water but we just kept taking her in and letting her scream. It's been a long road but I'm very happy with her progress. I'm a huge believer in teaching your children to swim to prevent any type of tragedy. I hate to hear about babies that have fallen into pools or lakes and have died due to drowning. Such a senseless death that could of been prevented. I've noticed that my girlfriend doesn't seem to feel there is any threat when her child is near the water. Yesterday she decided that her little girl didn't need her life vest and left it at home. She thought her little one wouldn't go into the water because she was scared. Well, think again. This little 2 1/2 year old saw all the other children playing in the water and there she went into the water with no life vest. It just drives me crazy how naive some parents can be. For all you parents out there who think that your child could never drowned. Please think again. Drowning is the third leading cause of injury related death in the state of Michigan. Nationally drowning is the second leading cause of injury related death. In 2000, an average of nine people per day died of drowning. Childhood drowning can happen in a matter of seconds. The major risk factors involved with drowning are lapse in adult supervision, however brief. Children under the age of four years old. Unlocked gates and inadequate fencing of pools and ponds and children not wearing a personal flotation device. I came across this video about a year ago. It's a baby survival swimming video. Babies are taught to flip over and float if they fall into a pool fully clothed. This would save tons of lives. This video is for a new survival course for infants and toddlers from the YMCA. These courses have saved babies from drowning all over the state of Florida. Every infant should take a course like this, especially if you have a pool or any type of body of water near by. Please, lets all try and keep our children save. They are our future.