BOISE Drowning, it's a fear of every parent when they're near the water, but there's a less common form of drowning that gets little attention.

Across the Treasure Valley as families prepare to spend time in and around the water knowing what to watch for is critical.

This phenomenon is called secondary drowning. It only happens in five percent of the drowning cases nationwide.

When it comes to water, it's been ingrained into parents to keep an eye on their kids while they swim. But despite their best efforts, it can only take a few seconds for a child to slip under the water.

We all know what drowning is, but secondary drowning is not as well known. Secondary drowning comes after a near-drowning experience.

It's when water gets sucked up into the lungs when someone is struggling for air under the water.

Children will typically go in and out of consciousness, but are eventually revived.

But then hours later, upwards of 48 hours later, that inhaled water can be deadly.

What happens is there's an inability for the body to get rid of the carbon dioxide and get oxygen in to actually breathe and so they suffocate at a cellular level, said Peder Ahearn, Paramedic Field Supervisor for Ada County Paramedics.

So what should parents watch for? If the child gets out of the water coughing or having a hard time breathing for an extended period of time, that could be an indication to get help.

Typically what parents need to look for is whether or not their kid is acting appropriately for their age, are they doing the things that they normally do? said Ahearn.

Also watch for the child's energy level, are they lethargic?

Watch to see if they are pale, or cool to the touch, really any indication that the child is sick.

Adults can die from this as well, but not as often because they tend to recognize the signs sooner.

If you see any of these signs after a near-drowning experience, call 911 or go to the emergency room.

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