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Parents are ‘pre-folding’ their toddlers before car rides on TikTok

‘You need to ‘pre-fold’ them!’ user says

Olivia Hebert
Los Angeles
Friday 15 March 2024 12:37 GMT
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Parents on TikTok are “pre-folding” their toddlers before putting them in the car.

It can be difficult for parents to wrangle their children into their car seats, and nothing encapsulates the struggle quite as well as a recently viral video of a young mother trying to put her child in his seat. In the video, Lauren (@laurarbs1) struggles to get her 17-month-old son, Emmett, into his car seat.

Many took to the comment section of the video to give Lauren advice, with a large number noting that the “pre-folding” method often works for them like a charm.

“You need to ‘pre-fold’ them!” one person wrote. “It works every time for me.”

“Gotta fold em. You prefold and they go in easier lol,” another added, while someone else noted: “I heard someone say they prefold the child.”

Lauren decided to try the “pre-folding” hack to great results. In another video, she wrote in the caption: “Snack and a pre-fold works every time.” She simply folded her son in half and slid him into his car seat, making it harder for him to fight her over it. As a mother of three, Lauren explained to Buzzfeed that she’s figured out several hacks over the years. However, she wasn’t aware that the “pre-fold” method was a thing despite using it for years.

Lauren said that she prefers to mix things up by distracting her son with a fun toy, a yummy snack, or a special song. Her trick is in line with what experts recommend, with some suggesting that parents should put their car seats inside their homes and have their child sit in it with a snack or book so they can get used to the feeling before going on a car ride.

“If parents are looking for new ways to get their child excited about car rides, there are safer hacks to consider, such as reading books about car rides, having a special song playing while everyone is getting buckled in, or offering a car-only toy or stuffed animal to hold during the ride,” Genevieve Rivera, executive director for non-profit American Society for the Positive Care of Children, explained.

It’s important to have a child properly strapped into their car seat, especially with car accidents being the leading cause of death in children under 12 as of 2019, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Car seat use can reportedly reduce the risk of critical injuries sustained in a crash by 71 per cent to 82 per cent.

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