Seatbelts Save Fetuses

pregnant-seat-belt.jpgMr. Christopher once again with a new finding that caught my eye today. There’s an old wives tale that pregnant women should not wear seat belts because it could kill their unborn babies. Apparently, the University of Michigan just published the results of their study in the April issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology. The study results appearing in US News and World Report showed that pregnant women could save the lives of up to 200 fetuses a year if they did wear seatbelts. Of the unborn infant deaths that occurred, over 65% of the mothers were not wearing seat belts and a good number were wearing the seat belts improperly.

The proper way for pregnant women to wear their seat belts is shown here in this diagram.

  1. Wear the diagonal strap between your breasts, moving the strap around the side of your bump.
  2. Make sure the lap strap sits comfortably under your bump. If it is over your belly button then it is too high. It should go from hip bone to hip bone, as low as possible.

mommys-racing-buddy.jpg“For pregnant women, the lap-belt portion needs to be worn low over the pelvis as stated in the article, so if there is a crash, basically, the bony pelvis is what the seat belt is restraining rather than [having the force] transmitted to the uterus or the abdomen,” Jones explained. “The shoulder belt should simply come up from the side, go between the woman’s breasts, and over the shoulder.”

Another surprising finding is that airbags deployed in the crashes they studied did not increase or decrease the resulting injuries of the women who were properly wearing seat belts. More in depth research data and statistics can be found on the US News and World Report website.