Let's start with little ones. The American Academy of Pediatric recommends children up to age two should remain in a rear-facing safety seats. The reason? Research shows children younger than 2 are 75% less likely to die or be severely injured in a crash if they are rear-facing.
Studies have shown cars seats facing to the rear is much safer. AAA and many more independent studies show that rear facing increases survivability rate in children.
There has been concern that rear-facing toddlers whose feet reach the back of the seat are more likely to suffer injuries to the legs & hips but that is a rare occurrence.
If you're confused read the labels. I went car seat shopping and noticed the instructions are clearly labeled: rear facing until two years or until a toddler reaches the maximum height and weight as recommended by the specific model.
The next step is a good forward facing car seat with a five point harness that your child will stay in until they reach age 3 or the height and weight recommended by the manufacturer.
Once your child outgrows the car seat, its time for a booster seat. This can be any time between age 4-7 depending on your child's weight and height and manufacturer.
For safety sake keep your kids in the back seat until age 12. They'll be plenty of time for them to call shot gun once they hit the teenage years. Stay safe while travelling this upcoming holiday weekend.
I'm Dr. Sue with The Kid's Doctor helping parents take charge.