Facts about drowning:
Every day, about ten people die from unintentional drowning. Of these, two will be children aged 14 or younger. Drowning is the sixth leading cause of unintentional injury death for people of all ages, and the second leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 14 years
It is responsible for 7% of all injury-related deaths. Children are more at risk of drowning.
What is drowning?
Drowning is caused by submersion or immersion of body in water leading to difficulty in breathing which may result in death.
What are Risk factors ?
- Age: more common in young children
- Sex: more in males due to risk taking behavior
- Access to water: living near ponds or other water source, unsupervised children near pool or even in bathroom small kids can drown in bathtub or bucket.
- Flood disasters is another cause of death.
- Travelling on water: in overcrowded boats, influence of alcohol.
- Other: lower socioeconomic status, infants left unsupervised or alone with another child around water, alcohol use, near or in the water, medical conditions, such as epilepsy,tourists unfamiliar with local water risks and features.
- Education and creating awareness in society.
- Protective gears and supervision while swimming.
- Fencing of swimming pool, presence of lifeguard.
- Strict laws for transport safety on water
- Early Prediction and better management of floods and other natural disasters.
- School teaching regarding water safety, swimming etc
- Community-based, supervised child care for pre-school children can reduce drowning risk and has other proven health benefits. Teaching school-age children basic swimming, water safety and safe rescue skills is another approach.
- Effective policies and legislation are also important for drowning prevention.
- Developing a national water safety strategy
Dr Rahul Varma