Start swimming lessons at the age of one-year-old, says American Academy of Pediatrics

Safety

Swim lesson photo from news story

Kids should start swimming lessons at the age of one. That is one of the new recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics.


The guidelines were released in 2019.

Drowning is the leading cause of injury death in U.S. for children ages 1 through 4. But almost 1,000 kids die from drowning every year. That is why the AAP is now recommending kids start swimming lessons at the age of 1.

It says water competency is the ability to anticipate, avoid and survive common drowning situations.

The AAP says there is evidence that swim lessons may reduce the risk of drowning, but the agency says "even the best swimming lessons cannot drown-proof’ a child"

That's why parents should always, carefully watch their kids around water.

Marci Harmon teaches infant and toddler swim lessons in Mishawaka. She believes teaching young kids to float and swim is saving lives.

“They can crawl. If they have any mode of transportation to get to a body of water, they are at risk of drowning or getting in trouble in water anyhow. Any barrier or precaution we can take to help prevent that or less the chance of that the better off they are going to be,” said Harmon, Little Fins Swim School.

The report also says as educators and advocates, pediatricians can play an important role in the prevention of drowning.

There are a ton of recommendations in this report to help parents.

Drowning only takes seconds. Infants are most likely to drown in bathtubs or buckets, and preschoolers are most likely to drown in swimming pools.

Many of these tragedies occur when the child gets unanticipated access to water.

The AAP News report details the death of a 3-year-old named Levi. His mom always had him in a life jacket around water. But one day on vacation he slipped outside and was found face down in the pool.

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