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Dry Drowning: Tips to keep your child safe in the water

Dr. Shilpi Agarwal discussed the warning signs and symptoms of dry drowning, following the unfortunate death of four year old Frankie Delgado in Harris County, Texas.

As pool season begins, it is important that parents are well educated about the signs and symptoms of dry drowning to prevent avoidable tragedies.

Dry drowning occurs as a result of water inhalation, but often well after water has physically been swallowed.

Symptoms include coughing, labored breathing, flared nostrils, sudden sleepiness, decreased appetite, and vomiting or gagging due to pressure in the lungs.

Dr. Agarwal described two different types of dry drowning. The first happens immediately when water gets into the mouth, causing vocal cords to spasm and cut off the airway.

The second type of dry drowning is delayed up to a week after water enters the lungs, making it harder for the body to oxygenate. Both cases can be fatal.

If you notice your children displaying any of the symptoms, bring them to the emergency room or urgent care. The condition is treatable if warning signs are noticed early enough.