Health Tip: Skip Winter Coats in Car Seats

(HealthDay News) -- Puffy coats or snow suits should not be worn in car seats, experts say. During an accident, this clothing is flattened by impact and may allow the seat's straps to loosen so that your child slips out.

Here are guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics:

  • Before use, Keep the infant carrier inside to keep it warmer.

  • Leave extra time to get everyone ready on cold mornings. You'll need to dress your baby in many thin layers, such as tights or leggings and a body suit under pants and a shirt. Put a thin fleece shirt or jacket on top.

  • Keep baby warm with a hat, socks, mittens (swap wet ones for a dry pair if your baby is a thumb-sucker) and booties to keep in body heat without bulking up under car seat straps. Pack a bag of extra clothes and blankets, in case of emergency.

  • Tighten up straps so they fit snugly. You should be able to fit a finger underneath, but you should not be able to pinch any excess. Place a blanket or jacket on baby in the car seat once strapped in. Make sure nothing covers baby's face.

  • Do not use any accessories that did not come with the car seat. Only use car seat covers that go over, never under baby.