Keep your baby safe by choosing and properly installing an appropriate car seat.
How do I choose a car seat?
Find one that is recommended for your baby’s height and weight. A common choice for newborns is the “carrier” seat. This has two separate pieces, a base that stays in the car and the infant carrier piece that you can pop in and out of the base. You can purchase extra bases for other cars and this option often fits onto strollers of the same brand. It works well for newborns who sleep much of the time and allows you to move the baby from car to store without waking him or her. Just be aware of the size limits on these seats so you will know when it is time to move to a different seat as your baby grows. If traveling by airplane be sure to choose a seat suitable for planes.
What about installing the car seat?
This can be a challenging process so be sure to allow enough time! Consult an expert if possible and have them help you install the seat in your car so you know it is done safely. If you will be using a rental car, ask the rental car company for advice. Consider bringing a Styrofoam pool noodle with you—these can be helpful in getting the car seat to fit properly.
Where can I find an expert to help me install my car seat?
Children’s hospitals, fire stations and police stations frequently offer assistance, but many require appointments or have limited hours – so plan ahead as much as possible. The hospital where your baby is born may or may not offer this service, but it is worth checking there as well.
In St. Louis, you can purchase your seat at Safety Stop and they will help you install it. Make an appointment by calling 314.454.KIDS (5437).
The following website is a good source of information regarding car-seat choices, helpful information, and location of fitting stations for your reference: http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/