5 doctors weighed in:

How long can someone be not breathing underwater and still survive intact?

5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge
Internal Medicine
3 doctors agree

In brief: Depends on temp/size

In general, not breathing for 3 - 4 minutes will render you unconscious, and at 10 minutes brain damage starts becoming permanent.
But if you are immersed in cold water, and especially if you are small so your body cools quickly, then much longer times of immersion without breathing are possible - there are cases of children in ice-water surviving intact after 66 mins under water. (20 mins adult).

In brief: Depends on temp/size

In general, not breathing for 3 - 4 minutes will render you unconscious, and at 10 minutes brain damage starts becoming permanent.
But if you are immersed in cold water, and especially if you are small so your body cools quickly, then much longer times of immersion without breathing are possible - there are cases of children in ice-water surviving intact after 66 mins under water. (20 mins adult).
Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge
Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge
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Dr. Marianna Post
Family Medicine

In brief: Depends

Depends on water temperature, in cold water brain needs less oxygen and person can survive longer, however in cold vater person does from hypothermia much faster.

In brief: Depends

Depends on water temperature, in cold water brain needs less oxygen and person can survive longer, however in cold vater person does from hypothermia much faster.
Dr. Marianna Post
Dr. Marianna Post
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