MONDAY, May 29, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Before your family pulls out their swimsuits this Memorial Day, brush up on water safety, for your kids' sake.
Here are some tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics on how to make sure children are protected while they spend their summers in or around pools, lakes and oceans:
Don't leave kids alone in the water, and make sure a responsible adult is watching them closely.
"Touch supervision" -- being within an arm's length of a child in the water -- is especially important for kids under the age of 5 and those who have less swimming experience.
Even if a lifeguard is nearby, this person shouldn't be distracted by a smartphone or other activities, such as reading or playing cards.
Fences around pools should be at least 4 feet high and protect all sides. Make sure that a young child can't get through any openings.
If your house serves as a fourth wall around your pool, keep in mind that kids might be able to go through windows, doors and pet doors. Alarms can protect the doors, and window guards can keep kids from going out windows.
Keep rescue equipment on hand -- a long pole with a hook on the end (known as a "shepherd's hook"), a life preserver and a portable telephone.
"Floaties," those inflatable swimming aids, are not rescue equipment. Don't use them in place of approved life jackets.
Be aware that suction from drains in a pool or spa can be dangerous, and repair them when needed.
If you are boating, make sure kids wear properly fitted life jackets at all times.
Teach your child to never dive into water without getting permission from an adult who's made sure the depth is safe.
Don't allow swimming in the ocean unless a lifeguard is on duty. And teach your kids how to escape rip currents by swimming parallel to the shore until it's safe to swim back to shore.
For more about water safety for kids, try Safe Kids Worldwide.
SOURCE: American Academy of Pediatrics, news release, May 2017
For Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts members
Find a Doctor & Estimate Costs
Health & Wellness
Attend a Seminar
Request a Call
Manage Your Account
Plans & Products
Forms & Documents
Tools & Support for Educating Employees
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts is an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.® Registered Marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.®´ ®´´ Registered Marks are the property of their respective owners.© 101 Huntington Avenue, Suite 1300, Boston, MA 02199-7611 | 1-800-262-BLUE (2583)
About Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts
Nondiscrimination and Translation Resources
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts is a leading provider of quality health insurance for residents of Massachusetts. Our main goal is to make health care cost-effective by offering health insurance solutions for individuals, families, and large and small businesses at affordable rates.
Our Vision — Making Quality Health Care AffordableOur Promise — To Always Put Our Members First
To learn more about our Massachusetts health plans, please visit our Plans & Products page, where you can compare Massachusetts health insurance plans, buy health plans online, and get Mass health insurance quotes.
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts also offers insurance, pharmacy coverage, and Medicare Plans for seniors; life and disability insurance through Indigo Insurance Services (a wholly owned subsidiary); and insurance for individuals aged 18-26 years. Learn more about our other insurance plans and Medicare plans, or contact a sales representative today.