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  1. The safety of our children is very important, babies should be in rear-facing car seats for as long as possible.

  2. You missed my pet-peeve of car seats, so I would like to add that the straps on a carseat should be snug to the child!!!!! (I TAUGHT car seat safety for a while, so I promise this is important.)
    EXAMPLE: Who cares if you have the safest carseat, installed correctly, in the back and middle, etc if your infant won’t be in the car seat when the accident is over. If you can’t safely lay your infant carrier on it’s side when your baby is strapped in, they probably aren’t strapped in tight enough for the potential roll-over car accident.
    HOW TO CHECK: When your child is buckled in how you would normally drive… if you can pinch strap it’s too loose. With an infant, if you can side more than 2 fingers (this is about the size of their whole hand) under the straps at the shoulders it’s still too loose.
    PERSPECTIVE: Worried tight is uncomfortable? When in the womb your child had very little room but was very safe. They will adjust, if they are older it may take some time but it’s worth their life for a week of whining. Consider that the loose strap could result in the child strangling or shifting during an accident. 9 out of 10 infants I see in carseats aren’t strapped in tight enough! The adjustment strap has been moved to the feet area of most car seats so you can loosen and tighten EVERY time you put your child in. It allows for that safe-snug fit with the ease of buckling while straps are loose.

    EXPIRATION: Car seats expire… Retire them when they expire! Have you ever had an old plastic toy break with just a little force, like a shovel and bucket you take to the beach? Car seats are stored/used (in the car) under very harsh conditions. It’s not 70s all the time but temperatures can range from winter freeing (maybe below zero) to sun baked summer >140 it really wears out plastic. Expiration is usually about 5 years from date of manufacture, so seats can be reused for your next kid but not forever. (Look for it on a sticker or engraved in the bottom of every seat.) Imagine that brittle plastic toy, like the bucket and shovel from the beach… fine for years and then it snaps the first use one summer…. now imagine that brittle subtly weak plastic trying to save your child as the car rolls into a ditch.

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