Prevent Silent Drowning - KAUZ-TV: Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Prevent Silent Drowning

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When you think of drowning, an image of someone in distress might come to mind but believe it or not a child could drown in just seconds without even making much splash in the water.

"The kids will be flowing their hands all over the place, they'll be screaming for help but sometimes is not even that. It can also be a silent drowning which is what you need to look out for," said Zach Vaughn, a lifeguard and supervisor  at Castaway Cove Waterpark.

That's why you might want to change the way you watch over your kids when they're playing in water. The signs for silent drowning can be kind of tricky. Experts say a child could just have their mouth at water level with their eyes looking glassy. They might even have trouble focusing.

Vaughn said, "They might go to the point where they're struggling with the swimming and they kind of give out a little bit. That's a good sign that something needs to be done."

Another sign could be a child who is trying to swim in a certain direction without making any headway. They might look like they're climbing an invisible ladder. Also, this might sound strange, but if they have their hair over their forehead or eyes something might be going wrong.

"Just don't horse play or anything like that. that's a good sign because if you go under, you could stay under. Or if you try to hold your breath under water, you could stay under and no one will know," said the lifeguard.

And if someone stays under water for more than four minutes they could start losing brain cells that can leave lasting effects if the victim survives.

Other signs are:

- Head tilted back with mouth open.

- Not using legs/lying vertically

- Hyperventilating or gasping

- Trying to roll over on the back

 

Tanya De Jesus, Newschannel 6