As all hot water devotees know, one of life’s finest pleasures is lounging in a bubbling tub. Worries and cares seem to melt away and we emerge truly revitalized. With a regard for basic safety and a dose of common sense, hot tubbing can be a very healthy and rewarding experience. Below are some helpful safety tips and information.
Maintain clean water
Do not enter a hot tub unless you know that the tub water is healthy and free of harmful micro-organisms.
Alcohol and Drugs
Drinking bird – keep out of hot tub ! Hot water amplifies the effects of alcohol and certain drugs and the result can be dangerous. Consult your doctor regarding the use of prescription drugs. Many people prefer the enjoyment of a chilled soft drink, juice or mineral water while relaxing in their tubs.
Soaking for too long in elevated water temperatures can raise body heat to hazardous levels. The National Spa and Pool Institute considers 39C to be the maximum safe water temperature for adults.
A safe soaking time should not exceed 30 minutes. Some medical authorities have recommended a lower maximum temperature They advise that since infants and children are more sensitive to heat, they should be exposed to water of not more than 35C for no more than 10 minutes. Consult with your family doctor.
Persons with heart disease, diabetes, high or low blood pressure, or any other serious illness should not enter a hot tub without first consulting with and obtaining the advice of a physician.
Keeping a floating thermometer in the water is a good idea, especially if your tub does not have a digital temperature readout indicator.
Children and Infants
Never allow children to use a tub without adult supervision. Children should be introduced into the hot tub slowly to give them time to adjust to the change in temperature and to alleviate fear or discomfort.
NEVER, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES leave children unattended in hot tubs, spas or pools. Even shallow ones pose a drowning hazard and even a few moments alone is too long. Better safe than sorry is a good rule to tub by!
Pregnant women should not enter a hot tub without first consulting with their physician and following the doctor’s advice.
Do not allow children to play underwater in a hot tub.
A drowning risk can occur when a bather’s hair becomes entangled in a drain cover, as the water and hair are drawn through the drain. Never allow children (or anyone) to play with heads underwater in a spa.
Regularly have a professional check your hot tub and make sure it is in good, safe working condition and that drain covers are in place and not cracked or missing. Check the drain covers yourself throughout the year.
Avoid corded electrical devices around hot tubs NEVER handle a corded phone, radio, TV, hair dryer or any other electrical device while you are around spas or pools, in contact with water, when hands or feet are wet or when barefoot.
Locate all electrical outlets a safe distance away from your hot tub, as specified in local building codes. Keep electrical devices away from the water, and never place them on the tub edge. If an electrical appliance should fall into the water, or be touched by a bather, electrocution could result.
Hot Tub Cover
Always use a locked safety cover when the hot tub is not in use. Keep young children away from hot tub unless there is constant adult supervision.
Small children are curious and unsupervised hot tubs can be an attraction to them. Make sure that the hot tub cover straps are tight enough to prevent a child from slipping under. Make sure your cover is in sound condition. Replace if necessary.
As an added precaution, consider installing a pair of extra tie-down straps for more security.
Safety Rails & Steps
Getting in and out of hot tubs with wet, slippery feet can pose a hazard. Consider the addition of sturdy spa steps and a handrail.
Keep dry towels handy for feet and hands by installing a towel bar. Non-skid surfaces around the parameter of the hot tub are a good idea. Serve snacks and drinks in plastic containers to avoid the possibility of broken glass. Make sure that adequate lighting is provided at ground level, especially if used at night time.
It is always wiser (and a lot more fun, we might add!) for adults to soak together. With two or more persons bathing, someone will be there to help if the co-tubber has a problem. Always accompany children.