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Bright Futures

Articles and Updates from Phoenix Children's

June 01, 2023
Keeping your kids safe around water

Kids love to swim, and you want them to have fun and enjoy being a kid. However, before the fun times can begin, it’s important to learn some important tips about water safety.

For children ages 1 to 4 years, drowning is the leading cause of injury-related death in the U.S. This age group most often drowns in swimming pools. In Arizona, the risk is even higher. Children ages 1 to 4 are drowning at almost double the national average.

Phoenix Children's and SRP are teaming up to prevent drownings with a unique research-backed program. This program trains pediatricians to provide information for caregivers of children ages 1 to 4 years.

At your child’s next well-child visit, talk with your pediatrician about the Pediatric Drowning Prevention Program. Ask for tips and materials that can help you protect your child.

Some easy tips to keep in mind to keep your children safe include:

  1. Don't go swimming when you're stressed, tired or anxious. You will likely be distracted.
  2. Choose a boss of the pool to supervise children. This is an adult who knows how to swim and will turn off their cell phone and limit alcohol.
  3. Make sure supervision is always fresh. If you can, swim with more than one adult so you can take turns watching the kids. If you're swimming alone with kids, limit pool time to less than 30 minutes.
  4. Use a properly fitted U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket for kids starting at age 1. Make sure it's shaped like a vest.
  5. Always stay within touching distance of children at the pool, even when they're wearing life jackets.
  6. Between the ages of 1 and 4, your child may be ready for swimming lessons. Keep it fun, enjoy the water and remember that life jackets and swimming lessons don't replace supervision.
  7. Finally, when you finish swimming, close and lock the gate.

For more information and water safety resources, visit

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