After your baby is born, he or she is so delicate that they don’t even have enough strength in their neck to support their heads yet. Parents must do all they can to keep their heads stable, especially when driving in a car or pushing them in a stroller.
If you have a young child and are concerned with keeping them in place when riding in a car, specifically, read on to find out more about car seat neck support for newborns.
How Car Seats Support Newborns
If you are a new parents and worry about car seat neck support for newborns, you’re not alone. The good news is that most car seats are designed to provide the proper amount of car seat neck support for newborns on their own. So, if you see your baby’s head flopping around while he or she is in their car seat, it’s probably user error. You may have installed at the wrong angle. That’s why it’s so important to install a car seat properly.
Here are some things to look out for to ensure your child is safe when they are in their car seat.
- Don’t be too concerned if your baby’s head flops left or right slightly. However, if your baby’s head is flopping forward, this will need to be corrected.
- If possible, don’t let your child nap or rest at an incline.
- When it comes to laws regarding car seats, according to Parents magazine, “a child should be in a rear-facing seat from birth until he reaches the height and weight limit of his rear-facing seat.” However, also be aware of the new booster seat changes 2020 will bring.
- Don’t be a confused parent! Make sure the car seat is installed properly.
Of course, this advice is all well and good, but it’s easier said than done sometimes.
Installing a Car Seat Properly
A properly installed car seat will keep your child’s heads from flopping around, but statistics show that no matter how long parents work with their child’s car seats to try and get it right, most are still improperly installed.
In fact, according to Dr. Ben Hoffman, a pediatrician at Oregon Health and Sciences University, 80% of rear facing car seats are improperly installed and a whopping 95% of front facing car seats are improperly installed.
How to Install an Infant and Toddler Car Seat
- Use either the lower anchors or the seat belt — not both.
- Start with the rear-center position.
- Position the seat where you can get the tightest fit.
- Lock the seat belt into position. Check the car’s owner’s manual if you need help.
- Position your child snuggly in place with the chest clip at the child’s armpit level.
The Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) Restraint System website has instructional videos that will also help you.
In addition, be sure to have the car seat checked out by a certified technician. A technician can be found by conducting some online research. And be aware, only a certified technician will do. It is not advisable to consult a fireman, policeman, or any other type of emergency or medical worker to check out the safety of your child’s car seat.
Parents should also be vigilant and check on their babies to see if their head is flopping forward. If it is, they should adjust the angle their babies are resting at to correct this. This applies to babies that are in car seats as well as babies that are in front packs, strollers, or any other type of device that they can be strapped into.
When babies are born, their vertebrae are still undeveloped. When the baby’s head flops forward, it could restrict airways which can be a dangerous situation for infants.
Do what you can to make sure your child is protected by providing the very best in car seat neck support for newborns. This way you can feel confident that your child is safe when he or she is riding in the backseat.
Still worried about car seat neck support for newborns? Read our stress relief tips for new moms and dads. Here’s wishing the best for you and your baby.