NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--It only takes about two and a half minutes to die in a shallow water blackout, or an underwater faint. SwimmingPoolSigns.com has released new breath holding signs to prevent swimmers and divers from losing consciousness in the water.
A shallow water blackout can occur in any body of water, from pools to lakes. The main cause of these blackouts is a lack of oxygen to the brain. Sometimes swimmers will deliberately hyperventilate before swimming as part of risky breath training regimes. The body becomes starved of oxygen, and the lowered carbon dioxide levels prevent the swimmer from taking a breath, leading to a loss of consciousness, often without warning. Once unconscious, the swimmer’s breathing reflex kicks in, the lungs fill with water, putting them at risk of drowning.
Strangely, blacking out underwater is a phenomenon that affects the most experienced of swimmers and divers – because it’s a part of some training programs, experienced swimmers can become overconfident, attempting their training without careful supervision. Competitive, repetitive breath-holding and deliberate hyperventilation are the conditions that lead to blacking out. Therefore, SwimmingPoolSign’s new signs are life-saving support systems for swimmers and divers of all levels. The signs include messages such as “No Long Breath Holding” and “Competitive or Repetitive Breath Holding Can Be Deadly.”
Conrad Lumm, Director of SwimmingPoolSigns, says, “The real danger with shallow water blackouts is intentional hyperventilation followed by excessive breath holding. Seasoned swimmers and trained divers are especially susceptible to risks, since they often try to condition their bodies to stay underwater for as long as possible, but this kind of conditioning isn’t a very safe practice for anyone.”
He continues, “Not everyone is aware of the danger of underwater blackouts, and therefore implementing our new signs will help spread protective and educational messages.”
To view the signs, visit http://www.swimmingpoolsigns.com/no-breath-holding-signs.
Notes to editors:
1. The following source was consulted for research: http://shallowwaterblackoutprevention.org/
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