While past recommendations indicated using children’s car seats until kids turn two, the new guidelines in this regard removed the age limit, arguing that safety measures must be taken until the children can use the cars’ built-in seatbelts.
Previous recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) also suggested parents place car seats for children to face the rear basing their guidelines on a study that concluded that rear-facing car seats reduce the injury risks for children between one and two years old.
However, the new recommendations removed the age limit stating that safety should come first when it comes to kids. Accordingly, there is no more age limit for children’s car seats now, and kids should use rear-facing car seats as long as they fit in, even though they are older than two years.
Why rear-facing children’s car seats?
According to several studies and trials in this direction, in case of an accident, the seat’s hard shell can absorb the force of the crash impact and protect the children’s head, spine, and neck. On the other hand, in front-facing seats, in case of a crash, the kid’s head might be thrown forward, causing severe harms to the neck and spine.
The author of the new recommendations regarding children’s car seats use, Dr. Benjamin Hoffman, MD, FAAP, said that there are no studies to show which could be the perfect age for moving from a rear-facing seat position to a front-facing one. He added that it would be wise to put kids in car seats as long as possible for their safety.
“We hope that by helping parents and caregivers use the right car safety seat for each and every ride that we can better protect kids, and prevent tragedies,” said Hoffman before adding that using children’s car seats reduces the risk of severe injury or death by 70%.
Jasmine holds a Master’s in Journalism from Ryerson University in Toronto and writes professionally in a broad variety of genres. She has worked as a senior manager in public relations and communications for major telecommunication companies, and is the former Deputy Director for Media Relations with the Modern Coalition. Jasmine writes primarily in our LGBTTQQIAAP and Science section.