Wednesday 17 January 2018

Baby health fears over car seats

Oxygen levels can dip in babies left in car seats for prolonged periods
Oxygen levels can dip in babies left in car seats for prolonged periods

Parents should always put babies in a car seat while driving - but maybe not for prolonged periods.

That's the advice which has emerged from new research showing that after half an hour in the seat, the amount of oxygen in the blood of babies under two months old were found to have dropped 'significantly' while their heart rates increased.

However, Dr Renu Arya, consultant paediatrician at Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, who led the research project in the UK, said: "Parents should not stop using car safety seats to transport their infants."

Instead, it may be a good idea to rethink leaving a baby in a car seat for prolonged periods when they're not travelling.

The Road Safety Authority of Ireland points out that under the law, all children under 150cm in height or 36kg (79lb) in weight must use a child restraint system (CRS) suitable for their height and weight while travelling in a car. An example of a CRS would be a child car seat or booster cushion.

Taking regular breaks when driving long distances is also recommended by experts. As well as giving a baby a chance to move out of their car seat, it will also help keep the driver alert and reduce the risk of accidents.

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