Parent’s Pay Attention! – Bath Time Safety

Bath time for many kids can be a really fun time especially when surrounded by mountains of bubbles and toys to play with. How many of you reading this remember spending many nights in the bathtub just having a blast playing with the toys and the smell of Mr. Bubbles? For many bath time will always be remembered as that time we as kids could allow our imaginations to wander with excitement. When it comes to bath time, no parent wants to think of the worst but unfortunately for some, bath time ends in tragedy.

Here is an excerpt from Parents.Com about a tragedy that occurred and why we are so passionate about water safety:

Seven-month-old Alex McCartney was taking a bath with his 2-year-old sister Lily when mom Joanne stepped out of the room to quickly heat up some water and answer the door. She ran downstairs, leaving Alex secured in his baby seat—which was suctioned to the bottom of the tub—with the water only up to his belly button.

 

Joanne was chatting with her two visitors—brother Richard Pedlow and his partner Nichola Barr—in the kitchen for about a minute and a half when they heard Lily screaming. All three of them rushed upstairs, where they found Alex face-down in the water.

 

“He was quite a big child and was quite heavy,” Joanne later said. “I think he had leaned forward and toppled [the seat] over.”

 

Barr was first to reach the bathroom. “I immediately put my two hands under him and lifted him out,” she said. “His face looked grey and his lips were blue. I could see the blue bath seat floating in the bath.”

 

She began resuscitating Alex while Pedlow called for help and put the operator on speakerphone to relay instructions. But by the time paramedics arrived, they were unable to find Alex’s pulse. The little boy survived on life support at the hospital, but died four days later, almost immediately after the decision was made to remove his breathing tube.

 

Here are links to other drowning stories:

https://abc7news.com/4-month-old-baby-drowns-in-bathtub-in-chicago/4050712/

https://www.ajc.com/news/national/baby-drowns-toddler-injured-bathtub-when-woman-walks-away-police-say/I87qgR1kkmpOrgob9GccTL/

https://wtvr.com/2018/01/19/mom-distracted-by-cell-phone-while-baby-girl-drowned-in-tub/

Stories like this are not uncommon and every story breaks our hearts! No child should ever drown and from something that is so preventable!

 

Image result for child bath tub safety

Typically, every January marks National Bath Safety Month but for the obvious reasons it is a year-round issue that never goes away. It has been asserted that that more children actually die in bath tubs than from accidental shootings in the United States according to ConsumerSafety.Org. Many would not know this as the media does not report on this fact.

Overall, drowning is the leading cause of unintentional injury/death in children ages 1 to 4, outranking accidental shootings, poisonings, falls and smoke/fire exposure combined.

Data compiled from 1999-2015 puts drowning deaths (7,543) over the combined causes listed above (4,590).

“Bath time injuries and drownings can occur in a matter of moments” says Chief Ed Castillo. “Parents must understand that constant supervision of children is the key to prevention of injury/death”

One in 5 parents have left their child alone in the bathtub of pool according to a June 2016 report released by Nationwide’s Make Safe Happen Program and Safe Kids Worldwide. Additionally, 1 in 5 admit to being distracted while their child was in the tub. Distractions can range from visitors to cell phones.

Why are some parents walking away, either mentally or physically? Some experts agree there’s a false sense of security when safety devices are around. For example, infant bath seats are a popular bathing aid, but many authorities advise against them as they’re known to tip over, which could cause a child to fall into the water and drown. Another reason can be attributed to the fact that many parents were brought up in homes that simply did not think about safety awareness as it was not as prevalent as it is today. The bottom line is that children in bath tubs need constant supervision!

Here are some safety tips that can prevent injuries/death during bath time:

  1. Check the water temperature – The Mayo Clinic recommends bath water should be around 100 degrees Fahrenheit. You should ensure the temperature isn’t too hot by checking it with your hand prior to putting your child in the tub. When the water gets too cool, bath time should be over.
  2. Opt for infant/child sized bathtub – While the idea of using an infant bath seat or inflatable tub is tempting, most experts don’t recommend them. AAP, Consumer Reports and Nationwide Children’s Hospital, among others, advise parents to use a hard plastic bathtub as an alternative.
  3. Keep it at 2 inches – Fill the infant/child tub with no more than 2 inches of water. Make sure it’s on a flat surface when filling, and never add water to the tub with the baby inside. If the infant/child tub is in a regular bathtub, make sure the drain is open so excess water doesn’t fill the larger tub’s reserve (it could cause the infant tub to float and tip).
  4. Stay alert – While obvious, it’s worth mentioning to always be within arm’s reach when around water, because a small child can drown in less than an inch of water. Most drownings occur in a matter of moments so leaving the immediate area could prove to be fatal.
  5. Put your cell phones away – We all know that cell phones are everywhere and we live in a world where cell phones are with us at all times however this can be a huge distraction. Put your cell phones in another room while giving your child a bath and ignore it at all times.
  6. Have everything you need within arm’s reach –Set everything you’ll need within arm’s reach — soap, washcloth, towel, diaper, change of clothes — before you start so that you can keep one hand on your baby at all times.
  7. Empty the tub completely immediately after each use – A baby can drown in as little as 1 inch of water.
  8. Learn infant CPR. Never leave your baby alone in a bathtub or in the care of another child, even for half a minute.

Image result for child fun bath time

The one thing we want to stress is that bath time for the kids should be fun and parents needs to be vigilant to supervise kids at all times. Our goal is to educate parents on the dangers of injury and death in or around water. Please monitor your kids in the bath tub at all times!

For more information, info@goldenstatelifeguards.com 

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