Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Leading Cause of Childhood Death

"I don't wanna!" protests the wiggly toddler. Screaming he kicks and resists climbing in his car seat.

"Boosters are for babies!" the preschooler cries. She stomps her feet and refuses to get buckled in.
"I'm big enough to go without a seatbelt!" announces the proud nine-year-old. Rolling her eyes she gives a self-confident smirk.

Ever face these - or similar - scenes when getting in your car? Many parents know the protective value of car seats yet their protesting kids sometimes make it an emotional wreck. I cringe when I see parents cave in and allow their child to sit unrestrained on a seat or - worse - holds their child in their lap! Aaarg!

Do you know motor vehicle related deaths are the leading cause of death among children? Child car safety equipment is essential for every family with children through age 12 years.

Always insure you have the correct or age appropriate car seat for your child's age. Then make sure you use it - even if you have a cantankerous kid. Research shows that 70% of children are improperly buckled-in and at risk for injury during a car accident.

So how do smart parents decrease the protests? When my daughters were small, we
  • kept special "car toys" tucked under the seats, in the glove box, and in the trunk. I pulled these out just for car rides. Playing the something "new" kept my girls in their car seat, entertained, and distracted from any perceived discomfort. 
You'll know when your child is ready to graduate off the booster to a regular seat belt when,
  • his knees bend over the seat edge while his back is flat against the seatback.
I’d love to hear your comments and tips for other readers to keep kids in their car seat. For more car seat safety info, check out this article by Felix Smith - it could save your sanity . . . and your child's life!

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