It's a warm, sunny day in midsummer and laughter from your backyard echoes throughout your neighborhood - or at least the block. Your two toddlers are thoroughly enjoying their kiddie pool. What you are enjoying is not only interacting with them, but also the fact that you have kept their pool safe and clean. With proper adult supervision and maintenance, kiddie swimming pools can be safe places for kids to play.
Setting it Up
Setting up a kiddie pool is as simple as filling it with water from the hose and leaving it in the sun, right? Wrong. This is where many parents and care providers make their mistake. Improperly maintained kiddie swimming pools can harbor dangerous bacteria that can actually do serious harm to children. The main thing to remember is to read the instructions that came with it. Not all kiddie pools will have the same setup directions, as they are all constructed differently.
Some kiddie pools will be inflatable, while others may be plastic or made of other solid materials. Each pool will have specialized instructions for setting it up. Adhering to those will help to ensure proper kiddie pool safety. Once that part is done correctly, simply fill the kiddie pool with water. According to the Water Quality and Health Council, tap water is already chlorinated, so extra chlorine need not be added to a small backyard kiddie pool. However, that does not mean that it doesn't need to be kept clean and sanitary.
Treatment & Maintenance
To help keep bacteria away and the pool water clean and clear, a kiddie pool should be maintained on a frequent basis. Because bacteria can easily collect in the water of a kiddie pool, it is best to change the water frequently. Younger children often have accidents, leading to contamination. To prevent this, tight plastic coverings can be worn over diapers or undergarments. However, regular maintenance still applies.
If fecal matter is present, just removing it from the kiddie pool is not enough to ensure proper hygiene. Urine can be stabilized with chlorine. However, feces contain properties that are not easily removed in this way. Instead, the pool should be emptied and cleaned. Fresh water should then be used.
General Safety Tips
Both the Water Quality and Health Council and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have listed some general safety tips for using and maintaining kiddie swimming pools.
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