Hello! So I have not been around to blog in quite some time now. Life happens. And honestly, there was something that I was devoting all my extra time to and I’ll be writing about that in a later post. But for now I wanted to make a quick and simple post just so it doesn’t feel like I disappeared.
Being on the road this summer has made me realize just how many babies and children are not in their car seats properly. It’s frightening. I don’t know whether or not the parents know the correct safety rules or what, I know the recommendations changed in 2011 so maybe some parents aren’t up-to-date. When I was pregnant I made sure to attend all of the classes offered by the hospital, one of them being infant safety where they covered car seat safety. The hospital also went over car seat safety and wouldn’t let us leave until they inspected our infant in the car seat and made sure everything looked safe. Having a child in their seat properly is one thing but the other part is making sure the car seat is installed in the car properly and is rear facing until AT LEAST 2 years in age. If you are unsure if your car seat is installed properly check for free car seat inspections that occur in your community and get it checked out!
The most common mistakes I notice are the chest clip not being properly placed, straps are too loose, and/or the child is forward facing before they are even 2 years old. Did you know that they don’t even have chest clips in car seats in several other countries because so many people position them incorrectly. If they are not positioned armpit level, over the breast bone, they can damage organs in a collision. It is also a safety requirement to have the child rear facing until the age of 2 or whenever they reach the weight requirements which is usually around 35lbs. Children can easily be rear facing until the age of 3 or 4. Some parents think that their child’s legs will be squished or uncomfortable. However, children make do of it and it really isn’t a big deal. What’s more important is their overall safety! When your baby outgrows their infant bucket seat it does not mean you put them forward facing, the next step is to get a car seat that allows you to rear face and keep them in there until as long as possible. I’d recommend a convertible car seat to last you many years!
Riding rear facing is not only safer for children but for everyone. Obviously, it’s a little difficult to rear face as a driver but I wouldn’t be surprised if you see rear facing seats in cars in the future. It just makes sense, think about being in an accident. (Most accidents involve a head-on collision) When a vehicle crashes and you are forward facing your neck and head whip forward. If you are rear facing, your head and neck will be supported by the seat. Children, especially babies, are a lot more vulnerable in any car accident.
Please keep your child safe this summer and always while on the road. Things to remember are; make sure the car seat straps are snug and secure (shouldn’t be able to pinch any slack), chest clip should be armpit level, and child should be rear facing until at least the age of 2. Also, as a side note for the winter time, a child should not be wearing a puffy winter coat under the car seat straps because this does not allow the straps to be as snug and secure as they need to be. I did not cover all the safety requirements so please take the time to do your own research and check out your child’s car seat if you are unsure. There are also plenty of images online to help you see what a child should look like when they are properly seated in their car seat.
That’s all, just wanted to spread the word to help keep all the babies and children safe!!
Baby Emerson getting ready to leave the hospital, only 2 days old.
Good websites to check out: