A new study seems to come out practically every day. How do I know the studies on rear-facing car seats won’t change tomorrow?
Physics don’t change, and the physics is such that forward-facing will never be safer than rear-facing, as this video clearly demonstrates. We'd all be safer riding rear-facing! Ever wonder why flight attendants ride rear-facing? You guessed it—because rear-facing is the best way to take an impact. With more than 30 years of data from Sweden, where kids ride rear-facing until age 4 or beyond, showing the benefits of rear-facing over forward-facing for toddlers and preschoolers, I can assure you that the only changes in the recommendations will be to increase the time kids should ride rear-facing, not decrease it. While these recommendations may seem new to many parents—specifically that kids should ride rear-facing as long as possible and in boosters until the belt fits properly (typically age 8-12)—they aren't actually new at all. Even in 2002, the American Academy of Pediatrics said for optimal protection, the child should remain rear-facing until reaching the maximum weight for the car safety seat, as long as the top of the head is one inch below the top of the seat back.
How do you get your child in the car without bashing his head on the top of the car?
Ever find your toddler on the kitchen counter with his hand in the cookie jar? Toddlers are great climbers; put their skills to good use and teach your toddler how to climb into their car seat. It may take a little practice to find the best way for them to climb in, so take a few minutes one day when you aren't in a rush to go anywhere, and teach your toddler. Make it a game and they'll think it is fun!
For younger kids who can't climb in by themselves, put them into the seat diagonally, with their head first and feet last.