Imagine this: You take your eyes off your toddler for just a few seconds in your neighbor's backyard, and suddenly you see her body at the bottom of the deep end of the swimming pool. Terrified, your first instinct is to leap in.
Don't do it. First tell another person to call 911, and then grab something that floats -- like a raft or a chair cushion -- before you jump in, experts warn. "Most people actually aren't strong enough swimmers to get a child out of a pool without using a flotation device," says B.J. Fisher, director of health and safety for the American Lifeguard Association. "The child will drag you back down." This is just one of the many errors that parents make in those types of scary situations you have nightmares about. Sometimes, we simply react without thinking. Other times, we rely on outdated medical information or home remedies that have no scientific evidence to back them up. Here are more worst-case scenarios, and the right and wrong ways to help your family.