Is Your Child Sitting In the Right Kind of Car Seat?
Posted on December 20, 2018 by Family Physicians in Trinity
You’ve probably heard stories from your parents or grandparents describing the extremely lax safety requirements for child restraints in the past. Car seats were archaic at best, and most toddlers bounced around the back seat without so much as a seatbelt.
Fortunately, child safety has evolved significantly since that time, and today it is against the law to transport a child in any seat that cannot adequately protect him on the road. Whether you already have young children or you’re expecting your first, becoming familiar with car seat safety is an important component of preparing for parenthood.
How to Choose the Best Car Seat
Don’t let price fool you. Many moderately priced car seats provide just as much support and protection as the Rolls Royce class car seats. It’s most important to select a seat designed for your child’s weight, height, and age. Types of seats commonly available are divided into three different categories.
Rear-facing only seats, also known as infant seats, can only accommodate babies and typically come with a base that’s left in the car to provide an easy “click” into its proper location. These seats cannot be changed to a forward-facing position. Many states now require that children stay in a rear-facing seat until the age of two.
Convertible seats can face backward or forward, based on the child’s size and age. Unlike rear-facing car seats, these convertible seats are bulky and not meant to be taken in and out of the car on a regular basis. A five point harness is used at the shoulders, hips, and between the legs to keep children firmly in place.
Forward-facing seats are meant for older toddlers and children. They only face forward and can accommodate up to 80 pounds. Many forward-facing seats are combination seats that can be adjusted to serve as booster seats as well. It’s essential not to place your child in a forward-facing seat until he has reached the appropriate height and weight requirements.
Get Advice from the Experts
If you are unsure of the best car seat for your child, speak to your doctor or pediatrician for help. Family Medical Centers in Port Richey and Trinity, Florida is open Monday through Friday 9AM to 6PM to help you with all of your health care needs. Call (727) 861-7043 to make an appointment today.