The Danger of Car Seats! The new recommendations

According to a new recommendation put out by the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, children under 2 years of age should be put in rear facing seats. There is a 75% higher chance of dieing in an accident under the age of 2 if facing forward. The old recommendation was up to 20 lbs, or around one year of age. The new recommendation actually says, up until they are 2 years old, or until they outgrow their rear facing seat.
Another interesting article put out last year, shows the dangers of a car seat when used around the house. There are lots of injuries.
Here is a summary of the recommendations from the U.S. News and World Report Health article:
* Don’t put a car seat on a table, chair, or sofa while at home.
* Don’t follow the advice of the “baby whisperer” types who recommend placing the car seat on top of a running washing machine to help put the kid to sleep.
* Shopping carts can be perilous, too; the American Academy of Pediatrics cautions against putting the car seat on top of a shopping cart, despite those nifty slots on the bottom of the baby bucket that invite that.
* Avoid the temptation to put the car seat on the tailgate or roof of the car in parking lots.
* Put babies in a playpen or crib if you need to keep them safe from pets or siblings. Use a car seat only as a travel device.

Like the author of that article, I’m guilty of using the car seat in the house. I’m sure we all are. For one, they snap out of the base when your child has finally fallen asleep in the car. At 6 wks, my little guy after a long 3 day road trip (we didn’t want to subject him to airplanes and the germs in them) started to fall asleep real easily in the car seat. So we use it to lay him down in for naps sometimes during the day in the house. After working in the ER for so long, I’ve seen many of these injuries. I am aware of their ability to miraculously flip over in car seats, and have avoided placing him in the seat on chairs, table tops, and counters. I still bring him inside, I just am extra careful he’s not in a spot where the seat can flip or he can flip out.

Some grocery carts fit my seat really well. It clicks in and locks in place. I guess I will avoid leaving him on top of the grocery cart, if it doesn’t click in.

One rule of thumb I’ve always used (even before having had babies) is to NEVER put anything on the roof of the car or on the tailgate.
I don’t even want to forget my coffee up there! So if I have to put my drink down (or maybe the baby) I’m putting it on the hood, where I’ll see it when I get in!

I think the guiltiest moment of my wife’s career as a mother was when my little Houdini managed to slide out of one of his chairs and clunk onto our wood floor at 2 months of age. I was so used to hearing about that happening, I knew he would be fine. Kids have been falling out things since the dawn of time. I’m sure that will be the first of many falls. Still, I’ll be even more careful now, I can’t heal scars.

Have you had bad mishaps with car seats? Bad baby slips? Comment here:

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