*This is a collaborative post* Recently, we discussed safe sleeping tips for your baby, each of which can drastically reduce the prevalence of issues like preventable SIDs. But, as any parent knows, keeping your baby safe is about way more than just considering what they do in their sleep. Daily activities, too, can pose significant risks to newborn babies and even older children and, in many cases, time spent in the car is the most obvious example of that.
After all, vehicles pose a risk to all of us, especially newborns. Sleeping in car seats is especially also linked to SIDs, while improper car seat installations can halve your child’s chance of surviving a severe crash. Obviously, general car safety rules still apply, with any family vehicle needing to adhere to MOT testing, tax regulations, and also protections from the cheapest car insurance company that offers a comprehensive package. Aside from this, however, there are some baby-specific safety considerations that you can’t afford to skip, and we’re going to look at them here.
Cover all your car seat bases
As the primary protection that any baby has against a crash, car seats obviously come top of this list, and should be researched, tried, and properly installed to ensure the best safety you can offer. Most importantly, you should always avoid secondhand car seats with uncertain histories (and potential safety compromises) in place of a safety-approved, well-padded, option that provides backfacing capabilities for as long as possible. Straps should also get a look in here as loose or twisted straps significantly compromise protections and should be double-checked and carefully tightened to avoid any mistakes.
Make sure you can see them
While you should never turn away from the road to see what your baby is doing, it is essential you can see them at any given time, especially in the newborn stages. Car seat sleep should especially be watched closely to avoid airway blockages if a baby’s head falls forward, but a general oversight is fundamental even for older children. As such, it’s worth either having a passenger in the back (for young babies) or installing a reliable mirror that you can see in your rearview without having to compromise your road focus.
Keep their car seat clear
Most parents now understand the risk inherent with loose sleeping additions like blankets, pillows, but these same risks apply where car seats are concerned. While it might seem like a good idea to give your baby a toy to play with as you drive, young babies especially can suffer a range of consequences, including restricted airways, choking hazards, and even further injury in the case of an accident. If you’re worried about entertainment, in-car music, car seat attachments, and even illustrations on your window sun shades are a far safer alternative.
Doing anything with a newborn can be rife with stress, but all of the rules are in place to ensure safety, even in the car. Simply keep these tips in mind, and speed into the safe driving lane today.