We all know how nerve wrecking it can be driving around Lebanon’s bumpy roads given the heavy traffic and reckless drivers out there. For new moms and dads, it can be quite overwhelming driving with a baby on board. On the other hand, there are easy, practical ways to make sure the ride is smooth and safe.
When buying a car seat, two important factors are making sure the seat fits securely in the car, and that the baby would fit into the seat properly in terms of the child’s height and weight. All car seats have height and weight limits. A child who is too tall for the seat is at high risk of head injury in case of a car accident. Car seat manufacturers provide very specific instructions in their seat installation manuals, which should be followed carefully when installing a new car seat. A child should be positioned rear-facing in the back seat of a car until two years of age or more, which is when their head and neck development would be strong enough to support them well in a forward-facing position. Once a child is old enough not to be in a car seat, it is recommended for the child to wear a seat belt in the back seat, though this is not custom in Lebanon.
It is important to lock all the car’s doors while driving, keeping windows at child safety levels and making sure the child’s hands are inside the car at all times. In case the parent needs to make a short stop somewhere, though it may be tempting to the leave the child in the car for a couple of minutes, babies or children should never be left unsupervised!
Comfort and entertainment
Now for keeping your baby comfortable and entertained, before taking off, you can try sitting in the back seat of the car to make sure it is not too hot nor too cold there, as the atmospheric temperature may vary between the front and back seats. You can strap a lightweight toy across the sides of the car seat so that it hangs in front of the child for entertainment. Light music is also soothing and calming for babies.
You wouldn’t want your baby to feel hungry or to start crying over a wet diaper while you’re driving, which is why feeding your baby and changing his diaper before taking off, or timing your trips properly to meet your baby’s needs, will surely save a lot of trouble.