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Stay Safe & Healthy This Summer: Watch It in the Water!

June 30, 2017 | By Emily Campbell, student intern with Community Outreach
Published in: First Aid, General

Life Guard at Augusta Health Fitness Center Pool

Temperatures are rising and days are getting longer—it's summer! While it's a great time of year for outdoors activities, the warmer weather, sunshine and longer days do present some seasonal health concerns. Here are some tips and information to help make this summer a great one and a healthy one.

When the temperatures start to reach the 80s and 90s, everyone starts to head towards the water. Families go on beach vacations, head to their neighborhood pool, or maybe even the slip-n-slide. Every summer countless lives are lost to drowning. It is one of the leading causes of death in children, and 80% of the individuals that drown are men. The drowning statistics are mind boggling, but the truth is most of these cases could have been avoided. The CDC provides an array of precautions that should be taken into consideration as you head towards the water.

  • Wear a life jacket: Life jackets can be a life- saving tool. If you don't feel comfortable swimming, there is no shame in putting on a life jacket. The CDC states that half of deaths caused during a boating accident would have been prevented had the individuals worn life jackets.
  • Take a buddy: If you are going into the water, always bring a buddy. Not only will a buddy help make the day fun, they can also help keep you safe in the water.
  • Inflatables are not life savers: If you use inflatable toys or rafts in the water, they are not substitutes for life jackets. Inflatables are not made to save lives; they are simply made as toys for water activities.

If you have children coming with you, it is important to be vigilant in watching them while they are in the water or around the water. Avoid distractions that will cause you to lose site of the child. Also, just because a life guard is on duty, does not mean that you don't have to watch your children. Life guards are key to water safety, but they are looking out for a lot of people. It is difficult to keep a close eye out on everyone. If your children are in the water, you should be keeping a close eye on them, as well.

In the movies, they make drowning look like a flailing, crazy moment; however, drowning is often not like that at all. The CDC says that drowning is quiet and quick. If you are going to the water make sure to pay close attention to those with you and around you.

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