7 Car Seat Mistakes Parents Make

Did you know that about 70% of child safety restraints in the U.S. are installed or used incorrectly? That’s an absurdly high number for such a serious subject! Statistically speaking, if you’re currently using a car seat, you’re more likely than not making a mistake in doing so. It’s important for parents to be informed about these issues and correct them as soon as possible. Here are some car seat mistakes parents make:

1. Forward Facing Seat

Turning your toddler’s car seat from rear facing to forward facing too early on is one of the most common mistakes parents make. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that kids remain rear-facing to a minimum of two years old, regardless of height of weight.

2. LATCH Usage

The LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tether for Children) system is in passenger vehicles from year 2002, and its purpose is to make it easier to install car seats properly. Parents must know that the LATCH and seat belt should not be used simultaneously, and LATCH can only be used in certain seats in your vehicle. Refer to your car’s manual to find out the LATCH rules.

3. Accessories

Parents need to understand that any accessory that didn’t come with your car seat was not crash-tested with the seat. Therefore, it can’t be guaranteed to be safe and must not be used.

4. Owner’s Manual

We’re all guilty of ripping open boxes of our new toys and products, and completely disregarding the paperwork that comes with it. When it comes to something as serious as a car seat though, reading the manual will tell you everything you need to know and how to install it correctly.

5. Expired Seat

Not only do car seats actually have expiration dates on them, but they can also be recalled. Check the back or bottom of the seat for a label stating the date of manufacture; there may be an expiration date as well but refer to the manual if not.

6. Shopping Cart

Parents should NEVER put an infant carrier or car seat on top of a shopping cart. Babies can, and have on multiple occasions, toppled off the top of the cart or had the whole cart tip over. This has led to skull fractures and other severe injuries.

7. No Known History

Since baby and children’s products are outgrown a lot faster than usual products, they get passed down a lot from one parent to another. Parents should never buy a used car seat, or even accept a free hand-me-down if you can’t be completely sure of its history. Even if the outside of it looks perfect, you never know if it’s been in an accident or cared for properly enough to trust.

Written by Stephanie Parker from Sleepingbaby.com, inventors of the Zipadee-Zip

The motto for Sleeping Baby, makers of the Zipadee-Zip, is: "Inspiring Dreams One Night at A time," and that, in a nutshell, is how it all started…with one little dream that has since become the Parker family's reality. When Brett and Stephanie Parker's daughter, Charlotte, was born, the feeling that welled up inside of them was indescribable; they never realized until first looking into those baby blues of hers that they were even capable of that kind of love.

When it was time to transition baby from swaddling, the Parkers tried every sleep sack on the market and everyswaddle weaning trick they could find for nearly two weeks and nothing worked to get baby Charlotte to fall and stay asleep.

Stephanie became determined to restore sleep and sanity to their household and set out to find a solution that would soothe Charlotte's startle reflex and provide her the cozy womb-like environment she loved so much but still give her the freedom to roll over and wiggle around in her crib safely. Out of sheer desperation and exhaustion, the Zipadee-Zip was born. The first Zipadee-Zip(R) Stephanie put together on her little sewing machine worked like magic!

To date tens of thousands of Zipadee-Zips have been sold and all from word-of-mouth marketing. It is so rewarding for the Parkers to see other parents and babies getting the sleep they both need and deserve!

Interested in writing a guest blog for Sleeping Baby? Send your topic idea to pr@sleepingbaby.com.

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