Did anyone turn their baby around forward facing before they was suppose to?

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Esther - posted on 04/28/2009

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Yes, but only by about a week. We took our son to Europe for his first birthday (to visit family) but we had been looking forward to turning him around so much that we decided to let him face forward on the way to the airport.

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Dawn - posted on 04/29/2009

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I turned my son at 10 months. He barely made the weight requirement for forward facing. We also moved him to the middle back seat position. He was much happier.
I know this sounds harsh- but car seats are only an issue if you are in a crash. I always buckle him up and think it's important. But I don't really think that front vs rear facing makes that much difference in outcome (as long as the child has good head control) on simple MVAs/ fender benders. I feel the difference might be in the severe accidents like roll overs or t-bones. That is when I see the worst injuries. (I work in ED) And as long as the child is restrained- the outcomes are pretty good.
So- I think being restrained is what's the most important- not front vs rear facing.

Candice - posted on 04/28/2009

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I did when my son was 10 months and he was so much happier when he was forward facing

Adf0905 - posted on 04/28/2009

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Quoting Carol:
Sometimes the risks are more keeping them back facing (legs being crushes).


? Internal decapitation is worse than leg injuries, in my opinion. In the research I've done, I haven't been able to find evidence of leg injuries from rear facing.

Carol - posted on 04/28/2009

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Yes, my daughter was about 15 months old. She was less than the 20 pounds but getting tall. Now she is almost 2 1/2 and still only about 24 pounds. Sometimes the risks are more keeping them back facing (legs being crushes).

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I did w/ my girls (over 6 years ago), but I bought my son a new seat so that he could stay rear facing longer . He is currently 13 months and about 22 pounds and will stay rear facing as long as possible. The new safety reccommendation is to keep them rear facing til age 2. His feet almost touch the seat now and his legs stay slightly bent. I'd rather risk a broken leg if it increases the chance of him living.

Jennifer - posted on 04/27/2009

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Another common misconception is that kids that are big for their age will be safer, and it's not true. Just because your child is taller or heavier doesn't mean his or her neck is any more developed than a more petite child of the same age.





On this same note if your child was preemie then you want to look at thier developmental age, not thier actual age for turning around/changeing seats.  For instance my son was two months premature so he did not turn around on his first birthday, but we waited until two months later so his neck/spine would be at the same developmental age as a normal one year old (we actually had to wait about that same amount of time before he reached twenty pounds anyway). 

Adf0905 - posted on 04/27/2009

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Quoting Jennifer:

I completely understand the temptation to turn the kiddos around early (mine is a tall one too and he hated not seeing) but it IS NOT safe! Most states do not have laws that are really up with the research, even though the general law is 1 yr AND 20 pds. Most research is now advising keeping the kids rear facing up to as old as two years or when they have reached the manufacturers maxium heighth or weight limit. The recomendation comes from the kids bodies, spine and neck being strong enough to support them and protect them from whiplash, not just in a crash, but in a fender bender even. Having know several state troopers (one is a family member) in thier words, having a safely installed child seat, appropiate for thier age/weight is one of the simplest things you can do to protect your child! They certainy don't mess around and it's because they've witnessed what the result is! We can't go back in our child's life an have a do over on this, so move forward and stay on top of forward facing and booster seat safety, look at the research, not necessarily the laws.


Another common misconception is that kids that are big for their age will be safer, and it's not true. Just because your child is taller or heavier doesn't mean his or her neck is any more developed than a more petite child of the same age.

Adf0905 - posted on 04/27/2009

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Quoting Heather:

I did it for her at nine months. She started to walk then and she is so tall that her legs were hitting the back of the seat in the car so we had to turn her. Also make sure you are putting her in then middle. It is absolutely the safest place b/c if you get hit on the side of your car, your child isn't going to get hit if they are in the middle!


I just wanted to say two things, so others don't get confused. You don't HAVE to turn your child around when their legs are touching the back seat. The only times they absolutely have to be turned around is when they reach the weight or height limit of their carseats. And putting a car seat in the middle is not always the safest option. Each car is different, and some (like mine) specifically say in the owner's manual that it is not recommended to put the car seat in the middle of the back seat. It has to do with the shape of the back seat versus the shape of the car seat.

Jennifer - posted on 04/27/2009

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I completely understand the temptation to turn the kiddos around early (mine is a tall one too and he hated not seeing) but it IS NOT safe! Most states do not have laws that are really up with the research, even though the general law is 1 yr AND 20 pds. Most research is now advising keeping the kids rear facing up to as old as two years or when they have reached the manufacturers maxium heighth or weight limit. The recomendation comes from the kids bodies, spine and neck being strong enough to support them and protect them from whiplash, not just in a crash, but in a fender bender even. Having know several state troopers (one is a family member) in thier words, having a safely installed child seat, appropiate for thier age/weight is one of the simplest things you can do to protect your child! They certainy don't mess around and it's because they've witnessed what the result is! We can't go back in our child's life an have a do over on this, so move forward and stay on top of forward facing and booster seat safety, look at the research, not necessarily the laws.

Anne - posted on 04/27/2009

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I did with both of my girls. The first one was tall for her age so it was getting to tight for her to sit that way. And with my second one she traveled way better facing forward. they were both about 8 months when I turned them around

Kareen - posted on 04/26/2009

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I did with my first. He was 10 months. He was just too big for the seat. He was already at the weight limit and he was tall, so his legs would be bent at his knees a bit. It's your call, some states have different laws for that. when I lived in CT, it was 1 year and 20 lbs, In NC, however it's a bit different I believe it is 1 year or 20 lbs. so i would also check the law in your state.

Heather - posted on 04/26/2009

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I did it for her at nine months. She started to walk then and she is so tall that her legs were hitting the back of the seat in the car so we had to turn her. Also make sure you are putting her in then middle. It is absolutely the safest place b/c if you get hit on the side of your car, your child isn't going to get hit if they are in the middle!

Brittany - posted on 04/26/2009

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my son was a week shy of his first birthday when my husband made the call to switch to forward facing position. I was scared because it was winter and you never know with the icy roads when someone can hit you. but my husband insisted because he thought our son was sick of looking at the back of a seat and now he can see out the window making the rides a little more enjoyable. he loves when we roll the window down no that its getting warm. and if I need to hand him a bite of food I dont have to practicly hop in back to find his mouth. I will deffinetly hold off as long as possible to but him in a booster seat. they just dont seem as safe.

Jen - posted on 04/26/2009

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I didn't, but my daughter moved out of the infant seat at 6 months and into a convertible car seat. I wanted to keep her rear facing for as long as the seat would let me (35lbs), but my daughter had other plans and was turned forward facing a few weeks after she turned one. She was just barely the weight limit.

Trish - posted on 04/26/2009

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I did with both my girls, although I had a larger rear-facing car seat they both grew to big for it before they got to the right age. They also travelled better once they faced forward.

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