The one year old child slipped through the sliding door while Mommy was doing dishes. Looking out the window, she notices the moment the child falls into the swimming pool. Rushing to the pool, mommy sees her child flailing wildly. She jumps in and pulls the child to the safety of dry land. Laughter and joy fill the air as Mommy assumes she just saved her child from drowning.
The child would not awaken from its nap. The ambulance arrives, and the child is pronounced dead. The cause is drowning. The mother claims she saved her baby, but the coroner says she didn’t; the baby died from secondary drowning. This is a parent’s worst nightmare.
Secondary drowning happens when a person has a near drowning experience. The individual gets a small amount of fluid in their airways. The fluid irritates, and causes body fluids to leak into the person’s lungs. The drowning happens not from external fluids, but from the fluids the person has in their own body.
If your child is swimming and swallows a large amount of water, it is wise to monitor that child closely for up to 24 hours. Never leave children unattended near pools. It is also good to have your pool fenced so that only when you, or another trusted adult is present can any children enter and swim.
Children are our future; don’t allow drowning or secondary drowning the ability to ruin their future. Safeguard your pool.