How to properly use Child Seats
Everyone’s on-board safety is always of utmost importance. For adults, children, and most especially infants, buckling up is something that we must always do before we roll out to our destinations. Babies, of course, rely on us to make sure that their travels are always comfortable, and above all, safe.
From the size, type, cushioning, and materials, we have a myriad of choices to get for our infants but there is a not-so-hard science in choosing the right one. These seats were made with all the best technology available to ensure that our tykes are held securely and safely in their own seats.
Here are some things we need to remember on the use of child/baby seats for our little ones.
For INFANTS and Toddlers
- Rear-facing seats are recommended for the youngest of children. There are two-types of rear-facing seats : one that is permanently facing the back, or one that can be used as a rear-facing, or later on, a front-facing seat
- Ideally, infants and toddlers should ride rear-facing seats only, or at least until they reach the age of two, or become too big for the allowable height and/or weight of the child seat
For Toddlers until Preschoolers
- Convertible seats used in the front-facing configuration can be used by toddlers. Of course, this is as long as the seats still conform to our young one’s size.
- Alternatively, purchasing a new, front-facing seat with harness may be more ideal to maximize the length of time that it may be used. Rule of thumb is that as long as the child fits snugly and comfortably, and he or she does not exceed the maximum length and weight supported by the seat, it can always be used.
*Please make sure to learn how to properly use your car’s seatbelts, or alternatively, your car’s LATCH System to secure all child seats that you will be using
For School-Aged Children
- Until the ages of 8 to 12, or until the car’s seatbelts fit perfectly on the child, a Booster Seat is recommended. Generally speaking, seatbelts are made for individuals at around 5 feet in height, so to ensure that they work as intended without hurting the passenger or compromising safety, do make sure that your child is well-supported by the seatbelt.
- Some Booster Seats are also made with adjustable panels and bolsters, so the duration and times that they may be used can be maximized as well
- When our child/ren have reached a height that is fully and properly supported by the car’s seatbelts, we can now do away with child seats
- Generally speaking, the safest place for children up to 13 years old is the back seat, but conforming to the size and requirements of the family, this may be “adjusted to” accordingly, of course
ABOVE ALL, from infancy to older ages, please make sure that their seat belts and/or LATCH systems are properly attached and snugly fit.
Seatbelts save lives, but for our younglings, their child seats are their first line, or should we say, shell of defense when we are out on the road.
Safe travels, everyone!
*PHOTO CREDITS GO TO CHICCO, GRACO, and RECARO*