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Drowning Doesn't Look Like Drowning

Would you recognize that someone is drowning if you saw them? Real-life drowning looks nothing like the way Hollywood depicts drowning: the yelling, the arm-waving, the violent panic.
The Instinctive Drowning Response – so named by Francesco A. Pia, Ph.D., is what people do to avoid actual or perceived suffocation in the water. And it does not look like most people expect. There is very little splashing, no waving, and no yelling or calls for help of any kind. To get an idea of just how quiet and undramatic from the surface drowning can be, consider this: It is the number two cause of accidental death in children, age 15 and under (just behind vehicle accidents) – of the approximately 750 children who will drown next year, about 375 of them will do so within 25 yards of a parent or other adult. In ten percent of those drownings, the adult will actually watch them do it, having no idea it is happening (source: CDC).

gCaptain has a list of signs that indicate the instinctive drowning response. Link -via Dark Roasted Blend

SO true. Once I saw my 3yo slip under the surface of the pool literally 18 inches behind my husband, who had no clue anything was wrong until I managed to shout. There was no splashing noise, nothing. The utter silence of that event still haunts me. What if we both had been looking the other direction, even if only for a few seconds? What was only a scary few seconds could have been the end of my sweet little boy. The incident made me a lot more vigilant around water than I already was, not to mention a lot less judgmental of parents whose children drown. It can happen so very quickly and silently.
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As someone who almost drowned as a kid I can vouch for that. My grandmother was six feet away and didn't notice. Fortunately my mom did. But that's because I was next to a cousin who could swim and I was pushing him under to try and get my own head up.
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I nearly drowned while surrounded by adults when I was about eight years old, in only six feet of water. Someone grabbed me and hauled me out because I was "too small for the deep end", not because he thought I was drowning. Thanks for linking the article.
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I am a reputable journalist writing on this subject for one of UK's biggest magazines. I'd really like to talk with SKE and Monkey-town. Could you please contact me on jdyson1@gmail.com ? Thanks JOHN
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