The US Food and Drug Administration appeals to parents to stop using baby neck floats after one caused the death of an infant.
This inflatable swimming tool also caused the hospitalisation of another baby. However, both infants sustained serious injuries after they were left unsupervised while wearing the baby neck floats.
In this article, you’ll read:
- FDA Warns Parents of Danger of Baby Neck Floats
- FDA Reveals Unnecessary Use of Baby Neck Floats
- Swimming Safety Tips for Children
FDA Warns Parents of Danger of Baby Neck Floats
We often see neck floats as these inflatable plastic rings worn by babies. This type of swimming floater allows infants to float freely in the water.
You may see neck floats in the market for children as young as two weeks old. Aside from that, some companies are marketing neck floats for premature babies or those with developmental delays or disabilities.
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Recently, the US Food and Drug Administration warns parents and caregivers not to stop using baby neck floats. They urged parents to avoid using it after an infant died due to injuries caused by the inflatable ring.
Meanwhile, reports say another baby was hospitalized after using a similar swimming floater. In both cases, the babies sustained serious injuries after they were left alone in the water.
FDA Reveals Unnecessary Use of Baby Neck Floats
Before the issue, manufacturers of baby neck floats encourage parents and caregivers to use them for mobility. Additionally, they market it as a valuable tool for infants and children with special needs.
Meanwhile, the FDA contradicted the claims of neck float sellers. They said the effectiveness of the products had not been established.
In addition, the agency became aware of companies marketing neck floats without an FDA clearance or approval. Some even promote the product as a water therapy tool.
Regarding this, FDA stated, “The safety and effectiveness of neck float to build strength, to promote motor development or as a physical therapy tool, have not been established.”
They also highlighted drowning risks that children may experience upon using the product. Baby neck floats could even become riskier for kids with special needs.
FDA also added, “Babies with special needs such as spina bifida or SMA Type 1 may be at increased risk for serious injury.”
A few years ago, baby neck floats garnered fame for their risky use with infants and small children. Unfortunately, sellers easily turned things around by sharing cute videos of babies using the inflatable rings.
There are photos of the pint-sized swim device which was circulating on social media. It prompted one paediatrician to describe the products as “potential death traps” in multiple news accounts.
Swimming Safety Tips for Children
Swimming is fun; almost every kid enjoys and has a lot of fun while swimming. However, parents must never forget, even in a split second, the real danger of swimming.
With that, parents must know how to ensure their child’s safety while enjoying the great outdoors. Here are some swimming safety tips that parents must know.
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Watching Kids Around Water
Watch or Accompany Kids When They Are in or Near the Water
Parents need to keep young kids and weak swimmers near an adult at all times. It would be better if you accompanied them while they are near the water.
Find a Nearby Lifeguard or Watcher
While the child swims with several adults, it is essential to ensure that one specific person is closely monitoring the child. One should be responsible for watching the children in or near the water for a certain period of time.
Always Avoid Distractions When Swimming With Your Kids
Always keep in mind that drowning is often silent. It could occur in less than five minutes, so giving your child all of your attention is essential.
We also encourage parents to swim with their kids instead of standing watch. It would be best for you to put away phones, books, and magazines and just focus on monitoring the child.
General Safety Tips
- Always ensure that there is adult supervision before letting your kids swim.
- Never leave your child alone swimming in or playing near the water.
- Ensure that your children remain swimming in designated areas with supervision.
- Avoid letting your children swim during a storm to when there is lightning.
- Never use water wings and pool toys as life jackets.
- Avoid using baby neck floats among infants.
- Ensure your kids can swim safely with the depth of water.
- Do not allow them to dive or jump into less than 9 feet of deep water.
- Keep a first aid kit, phone, and emergency numbers near the water areas.
- Learn to do CPR, especially for emergencies.
- Follow all pool rules, including no running, pushing people in or drinking other swimmers.
- Remove all toys from the water after everyone is done swimming. These items might tempt small children to enter the water when an adult is not around.