Study says that prolonged use of car seats can put babies at risk
Experts found that car seats may have a hidden danger. Read more to find out!
According to scientists, parents should not let their very young babies use car seats for more than 30 minutes at a time.
They had a ‘worrying’ increase in heart and breathing rates
The study used a motion simulator that had a reverse-facing car seat which was used on 40 babies that were less than two months old. They found that after half an hour, all of the babies had an increased heart and breathing rate, and a large number of babies had their blood oxygen levels fall.
It was spearheaded by Dr Peter Fleming, a paediatrician at Bristol University, who wanted to carry out the study after conducting a separate study on SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome). He adds that in his region, the South West of England, two babies in car seats die each year.
Additionally, the babies had a “worrying” increase in heart and breathing rates. The experiments had to be stopped because they were concerned about the responses in two to three newborns.
Car seats should still be used
While the study shows a potential risk to using car seats on newborns, the researchers are not against the use of car seats.
They add, “We are not putting a time limit on how long a child should be in a car seat. But we are saying avoid long journeys with young babies and make sure you keep checking them.”
“If you are doing a long journey break it up and when you have finished that journey put the baby in a firm flat sleeping place.”
They emphasise that parents should always monitor their children and sit beside them. This is so that in case they see any breathing problems, it can immediately be addressed. Additionally, it’s best to keep traveling to a minimum during the first two months of your newborn’s life.
Do you know how to properly use car seats?
In addition to making sure car seats are properly installed, there are a few other tips that parents have to consider to ensure that their children are safe.
Here are some of those tips:
- Car seats should be placed in the backseat. The backseat is the safest place in your car in the event of a crash. That’s why it’s important to make sure that your child is always seated in the backseat.
- Car seats should be rear-facing until your child is a year old, and weighs at least 20-22 pounds. You should also make sure to follow the correct installation instructions on your child’s rear-facing car seat.
- The seat should fit tightly in your car. The seat shouldn’t be loose, so you need to make sure everything fits tightly so that the seat is secure.
- Make sure the buckles fit snugly on your child. The buckles on your child’s car seat are there to keep your child in place. It’s important that the buckles aren’t too loose nor too tight.
- Children over 40 pounds should use a booster seat. Older children should use a booster seat along with the seatbelt on your car. Make sure to place the belt correctly, and don’t place the shoulder belt behind your child.
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