Dangers to kids can come from toxic chemicals in car seats

Posted at 5:59 PM, Dec 14, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-14 18:11:14-05

Car seat health hazards should still be a top concern for parents.

I know many use the car seat not only for transportation, but also to soothe their child to sleep. 

Manufacturers have made improvements, removing the most damaging chemicals like lead. But researchers found all 15 cars seats they tested to carry toxic flame retardant chemicals in the fabrics and interior foam cushions.

Flame retardants are considered carcinogens.

These chemicals can cause cancer, disrupt hormone functioning and harm a child’s development.

Infants and small children are most vulnerable because their bodies are still developing. They get exposed to these toxins because the air and dust become contaminated.

Car seat manufacturers have to comply with Federal regulations regarding flammability standards. However, researchers say that manufacturers don’t have to use hazardous flame retardants. 

But using alternatives would significantly increase the cost of a car seat.

Car seat safety is crucial for protecting your child during travel so you can’t avoid them. To help keep your child healthy, here are my prescriptions:

  1. Minimize the time your child spends in a car seat – don’t let them nap for hours unless you’re actually driving somewhere
  2. Wash your hands and your child’s hands often to reduce toxics getting into our bodies
  3. Vacuum car seats and your entire car frequently
  4. Never use a car seat more than 6 years old, if it’s been in a crash or has missing parts.

In terms of toxic chemical content, there are some seats that are healthier. 

One company called UPPAbaby has unveiled a new seat for 2017 that is specially designed to contain no added  chemical fire retardants.