Friday, May 3, 2013

Swimming Into Summer

Kim Gubbins, CPNP
From the desk of  Kim Gubbins, CPNP

Teaching your children how to swim is not only a life long lesson, it could also save their lives. According to a technical report from the AmericanAcademy of Pediatrics (AAP), drowning is a leading cause of injury-related death in children. The highest rate of drowning occurs with children under four years old, particularly toddlers, aged 12 months to 36 mos. Additionally, most childhood drowning occur from May through August.

The AAP and Pediatric Health Associates recommends that children 3-4 years old should learn to swim via swim lessons. Not all children are ready for swim instruction at this age therefore parents need to evaluate their child’s readiness and developmental level.
Due to the fact that drowning is a prevalent risk to our children, the American Academy of Pediatrics offers advice for parents about the water. The main recommendation from the AAP is to never leave a small child unattended near any type of water. This also includes not leaving smaller children under the care of older children when near water. Other recommendations include keeping weaker swimmers at an arms length from an adult. The AAP states that “drowning is not generally associated with a complete lack of adult supervision, but, rather, with a momentary lapse in supervision.” If you have a pool at your house, the AAP recommends that adults know CPR, the pool cover is capable of holding the weight of a child and the pool is fenced on all four sides. Lastly, the AAP does not recommend any inflatable arm bands in place of life jackets. Life jackets should be placed on all non-swimmers who are near water and any child riding in a boat (with or without a motor).

So please protect your child this summer and have them learn to swim. It could save their life!

There are multiple locations that will offer swim lessons in your area. Swim lessons are often offered at local pools, YMCA locations and through the park or school district. Below is the contact information for local YMCAs and surrounding park districts.

Bolingbrook Park District: 201 Recreation Drive
Bolingbrook, IL 60440
(630) 739-0272

Naperville Park District: 425 W. Jackson Avenue
Naperville, IL 60540
(630) 848-5000

West Chicago Park District: 157 W. Washington Street
West Chicago, IL 60185
(630) 293-5620

Plainfield Park District: 23729 W. Ottawa Street
Plainfield, IL 60544
(815) 436-8812
Kroehler Family YMCA: 34 S. Washington Street
Naperville, IL 60540
(630) 420-6270
Fry Family YMCA: 2120 W. 95th Street
Naperville, IL 60564
(630) 904-9595


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