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Here are our top 5 tips to help keep your children safe this winter:
Winter Coats and Car Seats Don't Mix
Don’t buckle your child in her car seat while she is wearing a bulky coat. A bulky coat or snowsuit makes the car seat harness loose around your child’s body. During an accident the coat can compress, putting your child at risk for greater injury. Instead, bring a thinner sweatshirt for car rides and lay the bulky coat over the top of your child like a blanket.
Stay Warm While Playing Outside
Dress your child in warm layers with hats, gloves, thick socks, and insulated boots. Generally, babies and young children need one more layer than an adult would need to be comfortable. Limit time outside, and bring your child inside immediately if he begins to shiver or become tired and lethargic, as this could be signs of hypothermia.
Safe Sleep For Babies
Keep blankets out of your baby’s crib. Instead, dress your baby in sleep clothing or use a sleep sack, which is like a wearable blanket, if you are worried about your baby staying warm at night. However, it’s also important that babies do not become overheated while sleeping. Your baby should generally need only one more layer than an adult would wear to be comfortable.
Keep Winter Sports Safe and Fun
Make sure your child always wears a helmet when skiing or snowboarding. Helmets are also important for children to wear while they are learning how to ice skate. When sledding, choose a good sledding hill with a flat runoff, and sled feet first instead of lying down head first. While enjoying all this physical activity, be sure your child drinks plenty of water to stay properly hydrated.
Avoid Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Carbon monoxide is a gas produced by fuel-burning or heating appliances, such as portable generators, water heaters, furnaces, and cars. Breathing in carbon monoxide can cause severe side effects or death, and young children are especially vulnerable. You cannot see, smell, or taste carbon monoxide, so it is important to have a carbon monoxide alarm in every level of your home and near every sleeping area. Keep the alarm at least 15 feet away from fuel-burning appliances, and never leave your car running in your garage.
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