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Pregnancy and seat belts: 4 tips to make it easier

On Behalf of | Apr 28, 2024 | Motor Vehicle Accidents |

With a body that’s rapidly changing, many pregnant women wonder if they should continue to use their seat belts and airbags the same way when they’re in a car, whether as a driver or a passenger.

In general, doctors say that you should always leave your airbags turned on and wear your seat belt while pregnant. The two safety features are designed to work together, and the combo offers the best possible protection for mothers and their unborn children when accidents happen. Here are some best practices:

1. DO put your shoulder belt in the right position

Your shoulder belt should ride over your shoulder and away from your neck, passing over your chest between your breasts, without being either uncomfortably tight or too slack.

2. DO NOT tuck your shoulder belt behind your back

When the shoulder belt seems uncomfortable, a lot of people either sit on that part of the belt or tuck it behind their shoulder – but that makes the belt ineffective and could increase the chance of a head injury for you and unnecessary strain on your baby in an accident.

3. DO tuck the lap belt under your belly

You want the lap belt to avoid crossing directly over your baby bump. Tuck it below your belly so that it rides firmly across your hips and pelvic bone. 

4. DO NOT let your stomach touch the steering wheel

If you’re driving, adjust the seat so that you’re upright and comfortable, and push it as far back as you’re able to do so and still use the pedals properly. You want to put some space between your baby and the steering wheel in case there’s a wreck.

Pregnancy is a special time in a woman’s life – and pregnant women always have to think about their baby’s safety. If you are injured in a car accident while pregnant, it may be months before you know whether your baby was injured, too. Seeking early legal guidance can help you understand the options you have to hold a negligent driver accountable for their actions.