The stages of drowning and what to do

On Behalf of | Dec 9, 2020 | Injuries

It can be a lot of fun to spend time on a boat. However, your good time can turn bad should you fall overboard and find yourself struggling to stay afloat. Not only can this result in serious injury, but far too many have tragically died from falling out of a boat.

The stages

It doesn’t take much water for you to drown. So, if you find yourself underwater in a large body of water, you’re at risk of this happening.

While drowning happens relatively quickly, there are several stages associated with it:

  • After inhaling water, you realize you’re in trouble and begin to fight back, struggling to breathe
  • Your airway closes in an attempt to keep more water from entering the lungs, thus resulting in you involuntarily holding your breath
  • You become unconscious, but resuscitation is still possible
  • Your body enters into a hypoxic convulsion state
  • Your body’s organs reach a point at which they can no longer be revived

As you can see, it’s important to get your head above water before you progress past stage one. Doing so allows you to get the oxygen you need to survive, until you’re able to get back to the boat (or land).

What should you do?

Prevention is more important than anything else. With the help of a life jacket, you’ll find it easier to stay above water should you fall overboard. This gives you time to figure out what’s going on and what to do next.

If you fall overboard without a life jacket, attempt to tread water until you can safely reach the boat. Furthermore, make noise so that anyone on the boat realizes that you require help.

You’re always at risk of an accident, injury and even death when you take to the water on a boat.

Should you suffer a boating injury as a result of another person’s negligence, learn more about your legal rights and the steps you can take to protect them. While your health and long-term well-being is top priority, don’t let anything stand between you and obtaining the compensation you deserve for the impact the accident had on your life (or that of a loved one).