There are not many people who wouldn’t enjoy the blissful retreat of having a hot tub in their backyard; whether you want to warm up on a cool winter’s night or take a moment of peace after a long day at work.
But, just because they can provide much-needed rest from the stresses of everyday life, it doesn’t mean you can sit back and forget about the world when you’re using a hot tub, especially when you have kids. In this article, we’ll answer one of the most pressing questions many parents have; are hot tubs safe for children?
Is it safe for your children to use a hot tub?
We know that safety for children is an important consideration when buying a hot tub, but yes, hot tubs are safe for children to use as long as they are accompanied by an adult.
Depending on the age of your children, you should always be there to supervise them when they’re sitting in the hot tub. As we’ll discuss throughout this article, there are a lot of different hazards you may need to step in to prevent.
So, although you don’t have to ban your children from entering the hot tub, you shouldn’t just let them play in it without supervision.
Potential hot tub hazards every parent should know
For most people, a hot tub is a place to relax and unwind at the end of a long day, but what’s usually a blissful experience can quickly turn into a nightmare if you don’t properly plan for a range of common hazards.
Here are just some things that could turn your hot tub into an accident waiting to happen:
The average temperature of a hot tub in the UK is around 37°C, which is relatively high considering that the maximum setting of most tubs is 40°C for safety reasons. For most adults, this feels like a good temperature that will warm you up on a chilly evening without scolding your skin, but for younger children, this heat can be too much.
If the water is too hot, your children can become dehydrated, start feeling faint, and potentially even lose consciousness if left unattended in the hot water for too long. Remember that children under 12 don’t sweat like adults so cannot regulate their body temperature the same so extended periods of time in a hot tub could be a big risk.
Before you let your children in the hot tub, turn the temperature down as much as necessary and check the water for yourself beforehand.
It sounds shocking, but did you know that children can drown in as little as 1 inch of water? Because of the amount of water in a hot tub, drowning is a very real threat that parents should be aware of.
It’s important always to keep an eye on your children when they’re in the hot tub to prevent potential accidents, especially if you’re not in there with them.
For young children, you can get them booster seats that keep them well above the water level when they’re in the hot tub, which can help reduce the risk of drowning.
Finally, your hot tub can be a breeding ground for bacteria due to the higher temperatures, so if you’re not on the ball about keeping your hot tub clean and sanitary, you could fall victim to a range of unsightly diseases.
Keeping a hot tub safe relies on you using a careful mixture of chemicals; not too much and not too little. To learn more about how to keep your hot tub water sanitary all year round, download the buyer’s guide from our hot tub information page.
10 tips for keeping your children safe around your hot tub
We think that hot tubs are an outdoor addition that’s best enjoyed by the whole family, so we don’t want your children to miss out on all of the fun.
If you want them to be able to enjoy the hot tub safely, here are 10 top tips you should always follow:
- Test the temperature of your hot tub before your children get in, and constantly check to make sure it’s not getting too hot
- Limit the amount of time that your children are allowed in the hot tub to prevent them from overheating or getting dehydrated
- Make sure your children drink lots of water while sitting in the hot tub to avoid dehydration
- Follow the buyer’s guide for your hot tub to ensure correct usage
- Make sure your children know that it’s not safe to swallow hot tub water and that it’s not a place to play and splash water around
- Use test strips in your water frequently to ensure that the chemicals in the hot tub are at a safe level
- Only allow children in the hot tub if they are able to touch the bottom of the hot tub with their head completely out of the water
- Utilise booster sits where necessary for younger children to prevent total immersion in the hot tub
- Secure the cover of your hot tub properly when not in use to avoid children accidentally falling in
- Always supervise your children when they are in the hot tub – especially if you’re not in there with them.
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