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What all parents should know about dry drowning

On Behalf of | Jan 18, 2022 | Catastrophic Personal Injuries

San Diego residents enjoy pleasant weather year-round, so it is common for homeowners to install swimming pools in their backyards. Because the pools can be impossible for children to resist, cautious homeowners must take steps to keep kids safe.

According to Cedars-Sinai, drowning is the leading cause of death for children under the age of 4. Even if your son or daughter is a good swimmer, you should know about dry drowning.

What is dry drowning?

“Dry drowning” is not a medical term, and many doctors prefer not to use it. Instead, doctors warn against delayed drowning. To understand delayed drowning, it is important first to know what happens when a person drowns.

Drowning occurs when the lungs do not receive a sufficient supply of oxygen due to submersion in water or another liquid. If this happens, an adult can die in as little as 40 seconds. For children, drowning can occur in approximately 20 seconds.

Dry drowning happens when death does not occur right away. Despite being in acute lung distress, a person may appear normal only to die from delayed drowning minutes or even hours after he or she leaves the water.

How can you prevent dry drowning?

The most effective way to prevent drowning is to supervise children when they are in the pool. If your child experiences respiratory distress while swimming, it is advisable to take him or her to the emergency room for a full examination. This is especially true if your child loses consciousness, vomits or has difficulty breathing. Simply put, an ER visit may virtually eliminate dry drowning risk.

Ultimately, if your child dies or suffers a catastrophic injury due to dry drowning in someone else’s swimming pool, you may be able to seek substantial financial compensation.