You use a car seat for your baby? This is India yaar, not America!
One of our neighbours saw the car seat and asked us why we couldn't simply carry our baby in the lap!
The first time we bought the infant car seat was when our first daughter was born, and was about 2 months old. The reason I didn’t buy it before that was because we didn’t really go out in the car with her till then, baring the few trips to the doctor near our place.
Both me and my husband are extremely careful when it comes to taking care of the babies, so it was obvious that we wanted to make sure our kids would be safe while travelling in the car. We did our research on infant and baby car seats while I was pregnant, and zeroed in on the one we thought would work best for us.
The first time I installed it in the car I remember we were at the lobby entrance, helping the little one get strapped to the seat. It was then that one of our neighbours saw the seat and came over to us. She asked us where we were going and why we were placing our newborn in that seat.
When I explained it was an infant car seat, she gave a smirk and then actually laughed out loud.
“Arey yaar, why are you troubling her like this? Ye India hai, Amreeka nahi. Godi mein rakh na," she said.
I did not get offended by what she said. In fact I was pretty amused and honestly had kind of expected this. But what worried me was the fact that she was absolutely serious about it. For her, an infant car seat was something that was more of a marketing gimmick, instead of something that is actually very important for your baby’s safety.
And let me tell you this, she was not the only one who told me to take my baby in my godi instead of putting her through the torture of sitting in an infant car seat, many of my other neighbours and friends said the same.
The fact that we continued the practice till our baby turned about 5 years old and also used it for our second baby made them kind of ridicule our parenting practices. They felt we were too ‘pansy’ in our approach and were handling our kids in a very Western way, instead of letting them rough and tough it out.
Safety comes first
But do you know that your baby is the safest when you keep them restrained in a child car seat? Here are some statistics that will tell you why it is so important to make sure your baby sits in a car seat till at least the age of 5.
- Car crashes are the number cause of death in most children between the ages of 3 and 14.
- The most common injury in a car crash involving a child is a head injury.
- When you hold your baby in your arms instead of restraining them safely in a child car seat, your baby is at a risk of flying off your arms and crashing out of the windshield.
- Spinal injuries are the most common car crash injuries after head injuries in babies under the age of 1.
- Chest injuries, followed by rib fractures and lung injuries are the next most common injuries in babies older than 1.
Now that you know some of the statistics, would you rather have your child and baby buckled up and keep them safe, or still just keep them in your godi?
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