How to choose a car seat for a newborn baby
- Why you should use a child car seat
- Types of car seats for infants
- Instructions for choosing a car seat for babies
- How should a child sit in a car seat?
- Child safety
To transport an infant in a car, you will definitely need a comfortable and reliable car seat. This device ensures proper fixation of the newborn’s body, preventing even the most minor injuries. To do this, most modern cars are equipped with special universal mounts on the rear seats.
Why you should use a child car seat
It is prohibited to transport small children in road transport without the use of specialized seats in accordance with the current legislation of most developed countries of the world. Standard belts are designed for the dimensions and body weight of an adult. Therefore, to provide protection to the newborn, additional fixation is necessary.
Newborns do not yet have a reliable musculoskeletal system. Their bones are still too fragile, and the muscular corset is weak. Even the smallest road accidents can harm the health of the baby. In the event of sudden braking or a collision, individual parts of the body are displaced by inertia, which often leads to serious injuries.
Carrying a child in your arms is almost as dangerous as without a car seat. The physical strength and reaction speed of a person is not enough to reliably protect a vulnerable child’s body. The results of crash tests showed a high probability of an unfavorable outcome at speeds above thirty kilometers per hour.
Types of car seats for infants
There are many types of child car seats on the market today. By design, they are divided into the following three categories:
- Car seats. They are used to transport the smallest children and do not provide the maximum level of security.
- Car seats. Suitable for all ages and offer maximum protection.
- Boosters. Not suitable for infant transport as they are intended for children weighing between 19 and 36 kg.
The infant carriers are mounted on the rear seat perpendicular to the direction of the vehicle. In them, the body of the child is fixed in a lying or reclining position. The bottom of the cradle is often made curved so that the baby can be rocked outside the car. Children very quickly grow out of the overall dimensions of such a device, forcing parents to again look for a suitable model.
Seats for infants are usually installed facing the direction of the car. This provides a high level of protection in frontal collisions and heavy braking. According to statistics, such devices reduce the likelihood of irreparable damage by more than 70% even in the most serious accidents. You can use such a seat until the weight of the baby reaches 10-13 kg.
Instructions for choosing a car seat for babies
Choosing a seat should be based on considerations of the security of the child. The device should be pleasant, convenient, and ideally suited to the model of the car and the physical capabilities of adult family members.
All modern car seats for babies can be divided into two groups according to the type of attachment used. Fixing the device on a regular car seat can be done in the following ways:
- Isofix mounts;
- seat belts.
Standard Isofix fasteners are rails with metal brackets built into the back seat of the car. This type of mount is considered the safest and easiest to use, so most modern European cars are equipped with it. The design of the brackets completely eliminates incorrect installation, even in the absence of experience. In the USA and Canada, their own analogues of the Isofix system are common, called LATCH and Canfix, respectively.
Most often, manufacturers use fixation with standard three-point belts. This type of fastening is less convenient, but it can be used even in those cars that do not have special clamps. Models of the Isofix system can also be fixed with straps if other fasteners are not provided in the car.
The practicality of upholstery materials
Upholstery materials should provide the little passenger with a high level of comfort. Upholstery fabrics are subject to strict sanitary and hygienic and operational requirements. Most often on sale you can find models with covers made of the following material:
- natural or synthetic fabric;
- finely crafted leather;
- suede leather;
It is unacceptable to use synthetic or natural fibers that can cause an allergic reaction or irritation. The upholstery should be easy to clean and pleasant to the touch. Covers made of cotton, linen and hypoallergenic artificial fibers have proven themselves best. Upholstery made of velor, suede and genuine leather is well suited for the cold season, but in summer, due to the high air temperature, these materials can cause discomfort for the baby.
The frame of the product is made of metal or durable plastic. The main structural elements are designed in such a way as to effectively absorb impact energy, reducing overloads to a minimum.
Car seat manufacturer
One of the most important parameters of a car seat for babies is the manufacturing company. Load testing of products is carried out at the proper level only by the most conscientious manufacturers. The product of a little-known Asian manufacturer, most likely, will not meet the declared protection parameters.
The world’s leading brands achieve a high level of protection even against extremely dangerous side collisions. You need to focus on the marks of the ECE-R 44-03 and 44-04 standards. Pay attention to the following manufacturers:
- Maxi Cosi;
The quality of the child seat depends on what materials were used to make it. Overly affordable models may contain hazardous chemicals, allergens and dyes.
Car seat type
For the transportation of infants, devices of group 0 and 0+ are intended, which are rarely made stationary. On sale you can find the following mobile versions of car seats for babies:
- Portable. Such models have a special carrying handle that makes it easy to move them with the child. The third most important characteristic of such products (after safety and comfort) is the mass of the structure.
- Wheelchair based. Models of this design can not only be carried separately, but also installed on the wheelbase of the stroller.
- With adjustable back. Changing the angle of the backrest makes it easy to switch between sleeping and waking modes. Since infants cannot yet hold their heads up, they need to be in a position as close to horizontal as possible.
All this allows you to provide comfortable conditions not only for the baby, but also for his parents. The ease of handling of a child car seat is considered one of the most important criteria for assessing its safety.
Additional features and accessories
Car seats can be equipped with a wide range of additional accessories to increase the level of comfort and expand functionality:
- set of interchangeable covers;
- screen to protect from direct sunlight;
- rain cover;
- a set of toys;
- Warm bag for the cold season.
How should a child sit in a car seat?
With any dangerous maneuvers of the car, the life and health of the newborn depends on the correct position of his body. For children under one year old, it is recommended to position them with their backs forward in relation to the direction of movement of the machine.
The angle of the backrest of the car seat is of great importance. The optimal value is in the range from 30 to 45 angular degrees. This provides maximum protection for the neck, abdominal organs and spine of the baby during collisions. In the cradles, the children are lying down, which corresponds to the anatomically correct position of the body. However, most cradles are not strong enough to provide adequate protection.
The use of pillows and cushions made of soft fabric will help to securely protect the head of a newborn from collisions during transportation. But experts recommend using for this only those products that came with the car seat.
The car seat is a guarantee of the safety of the baby on the road
Some parents believe that using a car seat is bad for their child’s back health. However, studies have shown that such a seat supports the baby’s head well, provides a more correct body position, and also contributes to the proper development of his spine.
A quality car seat is the only effective way to protect your baby while traveling by car. Even if you have to move to a short distance, you should not risk the health and life of the baby. Anything can happen on the road in just half an hour.
It is best to use a full-fledged car seat from a well-known manufacturer. If there is no money for a new one, you should not take a cheap Chinese analogue. It would be better to get a used model of proper quality.
In the following articles, our experts tell you how to choose the right car booster for your child.
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Attention! This material is the subjective opinion of the authors of the project and is not a purchase guide.