The previous advice from the American Academy of Pediatrics was to stop using a rear-facing seat when a child was 2 years old. "And that's really why we want kids to ride rear-facing". According to this rule, most children under the age of four and all children under the age of two will be facing the rear of the auto while seated.
Natasha Young, a certified technician for nonprofit organization Safe Kids Worldwide, explains the practical reason why parents might want to change their child's seating position prematurely.
"It's best to keep your child rear-facing as long as possible".
"Every month that a child rides rear-facing a little bit longer gives more time for the head, neck and spine to develop", Kerry Chausmer, director of certification at Safe Kids, told "GMA".
Children will ride in vehicle safety seat that faces the rear as long as possible taking into account the limits introduces by their auto safety seat.More news: Raikkonen takes pole, Vettel 2nd, to boost Ferrari at Monza
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Once children have graduated from rear-facing to forward-facing vehicle seats, the updated AAP recommendations also encourage parents to keep their children in the forward-facing auto seats until they physically outgrow them, which tends to be when they reach 65 pounds.
"Previously, the recommendation was up to 2, now it could be up to 4 years, numerous rear facing seats will go up to 40 pounds", said Pam Johnson, a Registered Nurse at Mayo Clinic Health Systems. "It's best to keep your child rear-facing as long as possible".
In light of the news, the AAP also launched a few tricks to back parents greater decide when their child ought to serene pass to a forward-going through automotive seat, to a booster seat and past. Usually, a child would stay in this rear facing seat until they were 2-years-old but now, it's not the age. rather the height and weight that are the real guidelines. Using the correct safety seat reduces a young child's risk of injury or death by more than 70 percent. "You lose protection as you go from rear-facing to forward-facing, forward-facing to booster, and booster to seat belt". This typically happens when a child is between 8-12 years old and at least 4 feet, 9 inches.
In an interview with NBC News, Hoffman said he's aware parents enjoy checking off these milestones for their kids, but he recommends taking a step back to make sure they're adhering to the academy's guidelines.