3 Mistakes Parents Should Avoid in Using in Car Seats
Statistics show that every year, thousands of children are injured because of car accidents such as crashes, collisions, and the improper use of car seats. Using safety seats has decreased the risk of severe injury among children. However, there are still parents who commit serious mistakes in using child seats which would eventually lead to a high risk.
Here are 3 mistakes that parents should avoid in using safety seats:
1. Buying a secondhand car seat.
Even if the seat still looks new and clean, secondhand seats are not recommended because there might be missing parts or it might have been recalled because of faulty design. There are a lot of disadvantages in buying secondhand seats. First, these do not guarantee a warranty. In case the seat is damaged, there is no assurance that the parts will be replaced or the unit will be repaired. Sometimes, secondhand seats do not have instructional manual or manufacturer’s instruction. Old seats must have been manufactured six years ago which may cause the material to age. Recommended seats must not be older than 6 years to avoid the danger of aging plastic. Always look for the expiration date stamped in the seat.
2. Installing a car seat in the front seat.
The law requires children to be situated at the back seat specifically in the middle part because that is the safest place to position the child. Children at the front seat may face more risk where vehicle collision happens because the impact is higher at the front seat. Even if your child pleads to ride in the front seat together with you, explain the importance of road rules and car safety tips to him so as not to put his life at stake. Also, the passenger-side airbag at the front seat, although helpful to adults, might cause head and neck injury among children once it inflates. Air bags are designed for adults and not for children. If you want to place the child in the front seat, wait until he reaches 13 years of age.
3. Keeping the child in a front-facing position too soon.
Children under two years old must be placed in a car seat facing the rear-facing position. Don’t be in a hurry to turn the child to face forward. According to pediatricians, the rear-facing position is safer because it protects the child to suffer from injuries. Children have weak necks so when car collision happens, the tendency is that the children’s head jerk forward. If the babies are placed in rear-facing position, the jerking of the head is controlled and limited avoiding further health risks.
There is no safest child seat for your kids if these mistakes are carelessly done. The main principle is that a safe baby car seat must be of high standard, newly-bought, and installed properly at the right place and position. Don’t put your child’s life at risk. Always follow the right procedure in installing a child seat.