You may have heard of something called dry drowning or delayed drowning. While those aren't actual medical terms, they do describe an event that can be both unexpected and deadly - especially to kids, who are at high risk of drowning. Here are five things you need to know about dry drowning:
1. This type of drowning can happen when even a small amount of water gets into a child's lungs. It can happen while a child is swimming, playing in shallow water or, even sometimes, taking a bath.
2. The warning signs can be subtle at first. A child may cough or sputter after inhaling some water but otherwise appear fine. But water in the lungs can trigger a severe inflammatory reaction hours later that can be deadly if not treated.
3. A child needs immediate medical help if he or she vomits, coughs a lot, feels sick, gets unusually sleepy, or acts differently after swimming or playing in water.
4. A trip to the emergency department is also in order anytime a child goes under water and comes up struggling or -loses and regains consciousness- while in the water.
5. Swimming lessons can help lower the risk of drowning. But they don't make a child drown-proof. Which is why close supervision is always needed when kids are near or in water.
Source: American Academy of Pediatrics