At Crocodile Baby, we are always suggesting ways to reduce the amount of time a baby spends in an infant carseat. We recommend that after an infant spends 30-45 minutes in a carseat, the baby should be picked up and allowed to stretch and move. Along with our recommendations, we were fortunate enough to receive a letter from Dr. Amber Kirk (skyhighlifestyles.com in Squamish). Here is her medical perspective:
“Being a chiropractor for over 10 years and specializing in paediatrics and pregnancy, I have become increasingly alarmed at the possible long term damage that can occur from these mobile seats. On a daily basis I see parents who struggles to carry these mobile car seats, and strain their bodies. I have also observed new babies who have left in the seats for too long with their heads becoming flat on one side, dropped over to one side, or forwards.
Neck, shoulder ribcage, pelivis, knee and ankle problems can arise or aggravate old injuries from lifting a heavy load on only one side of your body repetitively. Similar strains occur when struggling to get the infant car seats in and out of cars.
Babies are very susceptible in early days of molding to their environment and a lack of movement results in decreased brain stimulation causing several long term effects. Basic neurology states that the motor movement of the body drives the sensory system which in turn develops the cerebral cortex (smart part of your brain). With the weight of a newborns head on such a weak neck, lack of proper head support is very stressful on the nervous, skeletal, and circulatory system. A newborns cranium or head is sensitive to flattening when left for too long in one position. This is not just an aesthetic point, the brain is resting within this cavity and the cranial bone movement determines how well cerebral spinal fluid circulates and bathes the brain and cord. A flattened occiput (back of the head) has been linked to SID’s, nervous system, respiratory, digestive, cardiac and behavioural problems. I work with babies with colic, sleep issues, ear aches, breast-feeding problems and more and they always have cranial and upper cervical problems.
It makes complete sense why we should be encouraged to keep babies moving and to lay them flat in a bassinet or cradles in a sling. With all the physical, chemical, and emotional stress that is on parents and babies these days, it is nice know that we don’t all have to subscribe to the same products.
Products that are introduced to our western society may be very convenient or look good but what is the long term cost to us and our environment? WE are now the sickest species on the planet.
Thank-you for your time and insight!
Dr. Amber Kirk”