Atrium Health Navicent Urges Caution Around Water This Summer

Atrium Health Navicent Urges Caution Around Water This Summer

As summer activities ramp up and families prepare for pool parties and beach outings, Atrium Health Navicent is emphasizing the importance of water safety to prevent drowning incidents.

Drowning ranks as the second leading cause of unintentional injury death for children aged 5 to 14, with children aged 1 to 4 particularly vulnerable. The CDC reports that in the United States, an average of 11 children succumb to drowning every day, and survivors may face long-term disabilities like brain damage.

To mitigate these risks, teaching children to swim is crucial. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends swimming lessons for children aged 12 months and older, emphasizing basic skills like floating and navigating water.

Atrium Health Navicent offers swim lessons for children aged 4 and up, as well as adults, at the Atrium Health Navicent Wellness Center in Macon. These private sessions, held at an indoor heated pool, consist of five 30-minute lessons at a cost of $160. For questions or to sign up, email or call 478-477-2300.

“Swimming is good fun and good for your overall health, but you have to be safe. If your child is going to be near a body of water this summer, sign them up for swimming lessons. You never know when the knowledge of how to swim could save your child’s life, or the life of someone else,” said Dr. Edward Clark, medical director for Atrium Health Levine Children’s Beverly Knight Olson Children’s Hospital and Atrium Health Navicent Children’s Care Downtown Macon. “If a child does take in water, be sure to seek prompt medical attention.”

In addition to swimming lessons, Atrium Health Navicent recommends several safety measures:

  • Learn life-saving skills: Adults and older children should know how to perform CPR.
  • Fence off swimming pools: Install fencing with self-closing and self-latching gates to keep children away from water when unsupervised.
  • Wear a life jacket: Children and weaker swimmers should wear US Coast Guard-approved life jackets in and around water.
  • Supervise children: Adults supervising should avoid distractions and maintain constant supervision around water.
  • Avoid alcohol: Alcohol and drugs increase the risk of drowning. Adults should refrain from drinking while supervising children in or near water.
  • Reduce risks at home: Empty all buckets and wading pools immediately after use, and keep bathroom doors closed with toilet locks to prevent access by young children.
  • Ensure safety: Know the depth of the water and what’s on the bottom before swimming or diving.

In cases of water-related emergencies, immediate medical attention is crucial. The Pediatric Emergency Center at Atrium Health Levine Children’s Beverly Knight Olson Children’s Hospital in Macon is available 24/7 for children requiring care.

By prioritizing water safety measures and being prepared for emergencies, families can enjoy a safer and more enjoyable summer season.

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