Dr. Mindy Calandro on keeping kids safe from drowning
BATON ROUGE - Dr. Mindy Calandro, a local pediatrician, visited News 2 at 4 Thursday to provide parents with some words of wisdom on how to keep kids safe from the hazard of drowning this summer.
Dr. Calandro cautions that drowning is the leading cause of unintentional injury related death for children between one and four years of age. She says the biggest step toward keeping kids safe by the pool is alertness and attentiveness. In the traditional sense, drowning is a silent killer of children that can happen quickly if the "lifeguard" is not fully engaged in looking after kids by the pool. It can take as little as 10 seconds for a child to become submerged, two minutes for them to become unconscious and only four to six minutes before brain damage occurs.
The doctor also discussed "secondary drowning" which is a less well-publicized form of death by drowning that can happen away from the pool, hours after a child may have inhaled water into their lungs. The warning signs of secondary drowning include a sudden cough, difficulty breathing or an overall change in behavior.
To prevent all types of drowning, Dr. Calandro says active adult supervision is the most important line of defense. She encourages parents who own a pool to invest in a fence that completely surrounds the water, at least four feet tall and equipped with a self-latching gate. Be sure to remove all toys from the pool at the end of the day because children who see them may later be drawn toward the water. While nothing beats watching the kids like a hawk around the pool, swimming lessons can save lives.
For the full scoop on keeping kids safe, check out the related video. For more about Dr. Mindy Calandro, visit her bio page at the Baton Rouge Clnic's website.