Young children need constant supervision around water as they are especially at risk — they can drown in less than 2 inches (6 centimetres) of water. That means drowning can happen where you’d least expect it
2. Swimming lessons
It’s never too early to begin swimming lessons to teach your children how to swim.
3. Life jackets/life vests
Invest in proper fitting, coast guard approved flotation devices (life jackets/life vests) and use them whenever your children are near water.
Check the weight and size recommendations on the label, then have your children try theirs on to make sure it fits snugly.
For children younger than 5 years old or older children who are smaller, choose a life jacket with a strap between the legs and head support – the collar will keep their head up and face out of the water.
Inflatable vests and arm devices such as water wings are not effective protection against drowning.
4. Fence in your pool
Having a fence (one that goes directly around the pool or spa) between the water and your house is the best safety investment you can make and will help prevent pool-related drownings.
5. Skin protection
Teach your children to be Sunsmart. Don’t forget the sunscreen and reapply frequently, especially if the children are getting wet. UV sunglasses, hats, and protective clothing can also help provide sun protection.
Keep your baby cool and protect them from the sun.
6. Stay hydrated
Like adults, babies and young children need to drink plenty of fluids to avoid becoming dehydrated.
You can be creative when trying to keep your child hydrated. If they’re over 6 months old and get bored with water, try giving them a combination of very diluted fruit juice, ice cubes and homemade fruit juice lollies throughout the day. For older children, plenty of fruit and salad will also help keep their fluid levels up.
Signs of dehydration
Dizziness, feeling lightheaded, dark, yellow and strong smelling urine, decrease in wet nappies, passing urine less than 4 times a day, dry lips, mouth and eyes or nausea are just some of the signs of dehydration and overheating.
7. Keeping Cool
Follow the tips below to help keep your children cool and safe during hot weather.
Playing in a paddling pool is a good way of keeping babies and children cool. Keep the pool in the shade during very hot weather and supervise the children carefully at all times.
Run a cool bath before bedtime.
Keep your child’s bedroom cool during the day by closing blinds or curtains. You can also use a fan to circulate the air in the room.
Keep nightwear and bedclothes to a minimum. If your baby kicks or pushes off the covers during the night, consider putting to bed in just a nappy with a single well-secured sheet that won’t work loose and cover their face or get entangled during the night.
A nursery thermometer will help you monitor the temperature of your baby’s room. Your baby will sleep most comfortably when their room is between 16C (61F) and 20C (68F).