Do you extend rear-face?

Alyssa - posted on 05/13/2009 ( 104 moms have responded )

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Previously we have rear-faced until the limit of the seat which is 35 lbs. Recently however we have purchased Swedish carseats that rear-face until 55 lbs so our children will be rear-facing until 4 or 5 years old. What do you do?

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Geralyn - posted on 05/22/2009

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Alyssa and Jenifer, thank you for the information on the Swedish seats. I am going to track that. I turned my son around at 12 months to forward-facing, but then quickly learned about the recommendation of 2 years/30-35 pounds. I immediately turned my son back around. He totally didn;t react negatively. It was a community on here about car seat safety that I learned about the new recs.



I have a few comments. It is very telling that police officers who arrive on the scenes of accidents every day keep their children in rear-facing seats for as long as absolutely possible. These police officers witness injuries to infants and children that cause serious harm or death because the children are not in car seats or are positioned incorrectly in car seats. While you may stand behind the 1 year/20 pund principle because 1) that is all thet is required by law right now; or 2) your pediatrician said it was okay to turn them around then, I have no doubt that your position would change if your child were killed or severely injured in a car accident. However, it would be too late. Safety is the first priority.



As some of the posters have said, it takes years once the data is collected to effect change in recommendations by, for example, the AAP, or other safety agencies. It then takes even longer to have the state laws changed. Clearly, this delay gives a false sense of security to parents, and will not bring piece of mind if there is an accident.

Krista - posted on 05/17/2009

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Quoting Katie:

I'm still non the wiser as to why exactly rear facing seats are safer. Anyway as someone else has already pointed out - if it wasn't safe for them to be forward facing then they wouldn't make them for babies from the weight of 20 lbs



Did you read all the replies?  Or check out any of the links given?  Even do your own google search on the importance of rear facing car seats.  It didn't take me long to come across all kinds of info on how much safer it is.  Sometimes, even if the guidelines aren't as strict, if we have our own information we can make better choices than just following the minimum guidelines.

Cindy - posted on 05/14/2009

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Quoting Melissa:

personally i wouldnt worry about it just change them to forward facing. mine has been forward facing since she was around 5 months


 



It is the law in all 50 states that a child under the age of 1 year has to be in a *rear facing* carseat. Some states even have a weight requirement as well (20 lbs). Not only is it the law, but as stated many times in this post it is what is safest for the child. The longer you can keep a child rear facing, the safer they are. I am a car seat tech as well as work at a major hospital and can't tell you the amount of injuries I have seen that could have been avoided by keeping a child rear facing. One of our Peds docs has been known to emphasize to parents that he can fix a broken leg in his sleep, a broken neck is not as easy.  



My son is one year old and 20 lbs and I understand the desire to turn him to forward facing. However, I would much rather have his legs be a little sore at the end of the trip than to be visiting my child in the ICU while he is fighting for his life. I'm sorry this is harsh, but seriously people - comfort over safety? You have got to be kidding me!

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[deleted account]

I understand the idea of rear facing... that in a head on collision it is safer... because of the force pushing the child forward.



My friends child experienced some of the damage to their neck that can be incurred by a child in an accident.... landing the child with severe whip lash... and 3 weeks in hospital at the age of 14 months.



Her insurance agency would not pay one cent of hospital fees... and neither would the other drivers insurance agency... so she had to cover the money needed... in australia that would be a lot less than in america because of our health system... but was still quite alot.



the reason for the insurance agency rejecting her... her 14 month old was still sitting rear facing... and she was rear ended by another driver... other driver was at fault and insurance paid for the damage to the car... but was not found liable for the hospital fees for the childs injuries.



in Australia... the legal age a child goes from rear facing to front facing is 6 months... with the recommendation that the child be put in a reclining front facing... same angle as rear facing... just in a front facing position.



so... even though it may be safer for child... also be aware that if an accident does happen... and the child is injured... insurace may turn around and refuse to pay anything.... im thinking especially if the car seat is not legally accepted.



on my note... both of my children where turned at the legal age of 6 months... but i had to cope with constant screaming for 2 months leading up to that... because they were uncomfortable with their legs jamed up as they were both large children for their age.

[deleted account]

I understand the idea of rear facing... that in a head on collision it is safer... because of the force pushing the child forward.



My friends child experienced some of the damage to their neck that can be incurred by a child in an accident.... landing the child with severe whip lash... and 3 weeks in hospital at the age of 14 months.



Her insurance agency would not pay one cent of hospital fees... and neither would the other drivers insurance agency... so she had to cover the money needed... in australia that would be a lot less than in america because of our health system... but was still quite alot.



the reason for the insurance agency rejecting her... her 14 month old was still sitting rear facing... and she was rear ended by another driver... other driver was at fault and insurance paid for the damage to the car... but was not found liable for the hospital fees for the childs injuries.



in Australia... the legal age a child goes from rear facing to front facing is 6 months... with the recommendation that the child be put in a reclining front facing... same angle as rear facing... just in a front facing position.



so... even though it may be safer for child... also be aware that if an accident does happen... and the child is injured... insurace may turn around and refuse to pay anything.... im thinking especially if the car seat is not legally accepted.



on my note... both of my children where turned at the legal age of 6 months... but i had to cope with constant screaming for 2 months leading up to that... because they were uncomfortable with their legs jamed up as they were both large children for their age.

[deleted account]

I also wanted to add that kids CAN enjoy sitting rear facing. My 7yo is in a 5pt harness (my other "soap box" issue is keeping those kids in 5pt harnesses as long as possible and NOT putting them into boosters as soon as they hit 30-40lbs -- my dd is 62lbs and her Britax Regent is a 5pt harness to 80lbs) is forward facing and feels that she misses out by being forward facing! I sometimes comment on things I see in the rear view mirror and my son will point it out and my daughter gets frustrated because she can't turn around and see it too.

Sometimes we drive by things so quickly that we don't get to gaze at them and really appreciate them, but when you're rear facing, you get to see them longer. My rear facing son gets to sit back and look at the cows and horses while these things fly past my forward facing 7yo. So there are some benefits to being rear facing. Sometimes I think we might be projecting our own adult points of view on our little ones who may not be able to articulate these things for themselves. Most 7yos are in boosters and can twist their upper bodies to look back, but they can't do this in a 5pt harness, so my 7yo has a different perspective in her Britax Regent.

Just food for thought. Maybe putting your little ones in a larger convertible which puts them higher up so they can gaze out the window might do the trick to settle them down if they're fussy?

Kendra - posted on 05/22/2009

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I dont really have an opinion really, but with my son... I had to turn him before he was a year old at the recommendation of my pediatrician because he was constantly throwing up. He gets motion sickness. And so my pediatrician suggested because he was at the weight recommended already, to turn him face forward to see if that helped with the motion sickness. He was 11 months, so not too early. Seeminly, he was fine after we put him face forward.

[deleted account]

Jessica, here's the link to the AAP article from earlier this year, if you're interested:
http://aapnews.aappublications.org/cgi/c...

The official AAP policy did not change yet, because it is not due to be revised until 2010. However, the research (done in 2003 I think) discussed in the article above showed that rear-facing was considerably safer for toddlers as well as babies. Unfortunately, doctors aren't car-seat experts, so it takes awhile for new information to get out. Hopefully, more doctors will become aware of the latest safety information now that the AAP has brought attention to it. Hope that helped.

Jessica - posted on 05/22/2009

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Quoting Zoe:



Quoting Mishael:

My son is 13 months old, weights 26 lbs and is 33 ins tall. I turned him around right after his birthday and he is fine. I understand all of the concerns but he screamed everytime we were in the car from 10-12 months because he was uncomfortable. He is much happier facing forward and loves to watch us in the rearview mirror. With his height and weight I'm sure he is fine.





If you follow some of the earlier links in this thread from sites like www.car-seat.org, you'll see that it's not a matter of weight and height, but rather a matter of physical muscle tone and development that is age dependent. The issue is the fact that your son is 13 months old. If it's a matter of comfort, I'd try a different seat. My son is on his third rear facing seat as he outgrew the baby bucket in length, then the Britax Roundabout. Granted, I could have turned the Roundabout forward facing as it's a convertible, but I wanted to keep him rear facing and he's wel within the weight limit, but outgrew the height for rear facing (and would have been fine forward facing), but, instead I upgraded him to the Britax Marathon which is a wider and higher seat and gives him more room rear facing (and he's still rear facing at almost 3 years old). He's taller and weighs more than your son (but admittedly, not by much), but, again, it's not the age, but the physical development which is just something that comes as they age. Also, please read earlier in the thread where I posted a link to an article in the American Academy of Pediatrics April 2009 Newsletter. They are now recommending that children remain rear facing until the age of two (not one) as a recent study shows that it's 5 times safer. 






Everyone should note that the recommendation to keep children rear facing until the age of one in the US is outdated. 





Really?? How outdated? I heard this from my child's doctor last year right before my daughter's first birthday when she got her new car seat. She was still a few pounds shy of the 22lb mark so they said to keep her facing back till she gained a few more pounds but she has been facing forward since her first birthday and enjoying the view.

[deleted account]

Quoting Mishael:

My son is 13 months old, weights 26 lbs and is 33 ins tall. I turned him around right after his birthday and he is fine. I understand all of the concerns but he screamed everytime we were in the car from 10-12 months because he was uncomfortable. He is much happier facing forward and loves to watch us in the rearview mirror. With his height and weight I'm sure he is fine.


If you follow some of the earlier links in this thread from sites like www.car-seat.org, you'll see that it's not a matter of weight and height, but rather a matter of physical muscle tone and development that is age dependent. The issue is the fact that your son is 13 months old. If it's a matter of comfort, I'd try a different seat. My son is on his third rear facing seat as he outgrew the baby bucket in length, then the Britax Roundabout. Granted, I could have turned the Roundabout forward facing as it's a convertible, but I wanted to keep him rear facing and he's wel within the weight limit, but outgrew the height for rear facing (and would have been fine forward facing), but, instead I upgraded him to the Britax Marathon which is a wider and higher seat and gives him more room rear facing (and he's still rear facing at almost 3 years old). He's taller and weighs more than your son (but admittedly, not by much), but, again, it's not the age, but the physical development which is just something that comes as they age. Also, please read earlier in the thread where I posted a link to an article in the American Academy of Pediatrics April 2009 Newsletter. They are now recommending that children remain rear facing until the age of two (not one) as a recent study shows that it's 5 times safer. 



Everyone should note that the recommendation to keep children rear facing until the age of one in the US is outdated. 

Mishael - posted on 05/22/2009

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My son is 13 months old, weights 26 lbs and is 33 ins tall. I turned him around right after his birthday and he is fine. I understand all of the concerns but he screamed everytime we were in the car from 10-12 months because he was uncomfortable. He is much happier facing forward and loves to watch us in the rearview mirror. With his height and weight I'm sure he is fine.

Mel - posted on 05/22/2009

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I like your post Jessica i think the main reason we turned ours around at 4-5 months was because of this so we could see what she was doing and that she was ok and so that she wouldnt be bored and could see everything. i only had a capsule in my car in my fiances it was the carseat that can be used a capsule, but its harder for them to be in that from birth because they cant hold their head up. they love being forward facing and seeing everything! my god son is almost 4 months and when i had to pick him up my friend said to me do you have a car sear so i guess she was using a car seat as well not a capsule. it all comes down to personal choice of you want to leave your baby longer of forward face and make it much easier for baby and yourself

Leanna - posted on 05/22/2009

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I attend a playgroup which is run by a lady who is in charge of car seat checks. The recommendation is to have them rear facing until they are at least two. This will probably become law shortly. 9 out of 10 babies are not properly placed in their car seat. It's always good to get them checked. Getting a car seat from Europe may be good, but if it's not lawful I wouldn't use them. There's probably a good reason why they're against the law. Cars in Europe are a lot different then cars in the US, I know this from first hand experience.

Jessica - posted on 05/21/2009

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I think as long as you secure the seat properly and drive responsibly there is nothing wrong with letting your baby face foward. I turned my DD forward in her car seat as soon as she hit the 20lbs and 1 year mark that most doctors recommend in the US. She gets to see the world as it comes at her not as it goes by, and I get to keep a better eye on her than if she was facing the rear.

Saskia - posted on 05/21/2009

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my son was 72cm born so he out grew the capsule carseat by 3months so moved him to a big convertable carseat and had him rear facing until 8 months when his knees were touching chin

Mel - posted on 05/20/2009

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Thanks Erika, but mine is a big girl now she is nearly 14 months and even in the US 14 months is ok to turn the car seat around. Why do you think i should change it back when she is 14 months? shes way too long shes 80 cm shes abnormally long for her age and is completely off the charts in her weight range too. Thanks for being responsible and kind about the way you worded your message

Kristen - posted on 05/20/2009

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I honestly believe in gut feelings. Only you know what is best for your baby. Your the mother, and yes laws are out there but if you followed every rule, and law, and old folktale that you were told about parenting you would have your child in a bubble until they were 18. Safety is extremely important but you know how many safety precautions there are according to children? You are alive, and I highly doubt your mom's followed everything by the book. And to all of you who are so worried about comfort being a stupid reason to consider, take my case into consideration. My daughter gets car sick. Its not a normal get mad, cry, and have a mad fit kind of sick, it is full on projectile vomiting from sitting backwards. All of you adults try getting in the backseat of your car and drive for a few hours staring out the back window, it has an effect on you. My daughter is going to be one in just a few days and even though she is 2 pounds under the 22lb rule, I am turning her around. Safety compared to sickness and dehydration? I think thats a little bit of a no brainer. I would get social services called on me if I got out of my car and my daughter and my whole car was covered in vomit.

I think you should just follow your instincts. Mothers have it, just listen to it. There can be a million 'experts' sitting in a conference room telling you what you should do but motherly instinct is something that can't be overruled.

Erika - posted on 05/20/2009

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Quoting Melissa:

that groses me out vids like that. i dont know why i even watched it i was just bored but in future please do not try to change peoples minds. mother knows best and if i chose to change my child around that is my personal choice and i am not breaking the law so please stop sending me these links and msgs thankyou


I'm sorry if I was one of the judgemental ones.  How nice to I have to be to you to gently suggest that your child is much safer rear facing. . . even now??  A child's head is so large in realation the the rest of it's body and their necks are so tiny.  The RF seat protects their head from thrashing about in a crash and damaging that tiny little neck.  For some reason you words seem to suggest you think the laws are going to keep your child safe.  I would like to gently and remind you as a friend would that keeping your child safe is up to you more than the folks writing the laws.  Please consider turning your child around.  Please??  I won't write you again since I know you have received many messages.

Erika - posted on 05/20/2009

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Quoting Angie:

Why would you do that to your kid for so long. My daughter was so happy to face the right way. some people take things too far


Yes some people take things too far. . . but not here!  My son would be much happier if he didn't have to wear a life jacket in the pool. He can't swim yet though.  I'm not sure if he'd be able to smile if his neck was severely injured in a crash while facing forward when rear facing was the safer option.  Why is child's happiness a factor here?  We don't let them ride in the front with airbags do we?  Facing the rear IS the right way if you are putting safety first.

Erika - posted on 05/20/2009

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Quoting Anita:

My LO is 15 months and we just changed her to be forward facing. She was very getting very uncomfortable rear-facing and now she's much happier when she's in the car. I was hoping to keep her rear facing a bit longer, but her comfort is a factor for us to be able to go anywhere.


My LO screamed in his infant seat (the one you remove from the car).  We never figured out why.  I always put him in it though.  I would re-examine your logic of keeping your child comfortable.  If your child is to the 35 pound limit then I suppose forward is ok, 15 months seems so young to FF. I would rather have a safe unhappy child than a happy child that gets severely injured in a crash.  I hope this was helpful to you.

Erika - posted on 05/20/2009

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Quoting Melissa:

personally i wouldnt worry about it just change them to forward facing. mine has been forward facing since she was around 5 months


Yes, I second.  I hope you're kidding.  Do you think you're immune to car wrecks and you're child would not be injured?  My child was still in his infant seat at 5 months.  Every manufacturer will tell you to install the seat rear facing for a reason.  I hope this has shed light on your current decision to face your child forward.

[deleted account]

My 2.75 year old son is in his THIRD rear facing seat. The first was a baby bucket style infant seat which he outgrew by length before height, yet I still wanted to keep him rear facing so I put him in a Britax Rondabout. He outgrew that by length (he's long and lean) and even though he was well over a year -- almost two years old, in fact -- I still wanted to keep him rear facing and put him in a Britax Marathon. Yes, he outgrew the seat by length and it was no longer the best fit for him, but I firmly believe that it was and is safest for him to be rear facing. For his physical comfort and safety, I purchased the most suitable seat instead of turning him forward facing for my own convenience and thriftiness. There are some programs out there to help people keep their kids in appropriate seats if you can't afford it and don't want to compromise your child's safety.

Similarly, it would have been much easier to just move my now 7yo into a booster. They're lightweight and easy to move around, but I firmly believe that keeping children in a 5pt harness seat as long as possible is the safest option. My daughter is in a Britax Regent and will be until she outgrows it. Again, it's not an inexpensive seat, but there are programs out there, like the Kyle David Miller Foundation, that exist to help keep our kids safe.

This means that our children need more than one seat in childhood and sometimes more than two. But carseats expire anyway! With a six year shelf life and state laws mandating car seat usage for 8 years, they will need a minimum of two seats anyway, so why not plan on it from the start and choose our seats wisely? Why not get convertible seats that can allow our children to be rear facing longer and in the most comfort? I actually never had an infant seat with my daughter and won't bother with one if I have another child. Why not get a five point harness that will last until the rest of their car seat days?

Vasanta - posted on 05/20/2009

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Ihad my car seat (rear facing) put in by a certified person here in Nashville TN and she told me they are now recommending that kids stay rear facing until 2 years old. Check with a certified Car Seat person in your state

[deleted account]

Yes, all Cosco (and Safety 1st since they are the same co) require a minimum of 22lbs and 34 inches before you may forward face in them.

Guggie - posted on 05/20/2009

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So I checked my scenera carseat and the sticker says "rearface...until the child is at least 1 year old AND 22lbs AND 34 inches"

Amanda - posted on 05/20/2009

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hi im a mum of two a 4 yr old and a 19mth old and im from australia.....ive been reading this thread and so many different opinions about which way their carseats should be and at what age....well i personally have big babies both mine weighed 9.5p and 10p when born so they have always been big while growing but when i did decide to turn the around which for both was around the 1yr mark i really had a good think about their safety how comfortable they were as both mine had their legs all scrunched up and would cry everytime i would put them in right up until it was time to get out again i think that if your child is old enough and weight wise to be turned then do it the screaming and crying of a baby/child in the back is what sometimes can cause accidents because your not focused on the road and your surroundings your child will be much happier when getting in the car he/she can have a look around watching what your doing playing with some toys it will make the whole car experience a happy one but thats just my opinion and every parent has their ways of how they want to to things but just remember that safety is important and just make sure that your child is ready to be turned

Christin - posted on 05/20/2009

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Quoting Joanne:

The state law for Mass is 20lbs AND 1 years. I rear faced for both of my kids until they were 20lbs and 1 years old. When they hit that mark, I had them forward facing. We turned the infant seat around and did not get another one, until they out grew it, either by weight or length.


I hope by infant seat you are refering to a convertible here, as infant carriers are NOT to be used forward facing they are notsafe in that manner as they are not intended to be used this way!!!!



Just throwing this out there for any one who may be reading this! Also may I mention using an infant carrier in this manner is also ILLEGAL!

Christin - posted on 05/20/2009

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Thanks you Ashley! I am so sick of people saying they do not have to worry since "They are safe drivers!" It is not you that you need to worry about, it is the other drivers who are not paying attention and are to distracted to drive safely that will hit your car, you do not hit your car! Most fatal accidents to children are those caused by another driver not the parent! So DO NOT HIDE BEHIND YOUR EXCUSE THAT YOU ARE A SAFE DRIVER! (not yelling just making a point@)
It is the dumbest thing anyone with a brain in their head can think of saying. If you are that ignorant to think a drunk driver or distracted teenage driver is magically going to miss your car since you are a "good driver" you are WRONG! In most cases the car that gets hit never sees the oncoming car!

Sorry there I said my peace!

Guggie - posted on 05/19/2009

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lol This thread highlights why car accidents are the number killer for children in America but vaccines make the headlines. *rolls eyes*

Ashley - posted on 05/19/2009

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As one other poster said earlier, this is my "soapbox" issue. Car accidents are prevalent, here in the US they kill more people yearly than any other cause of death, especially in children. To think that your child will be safe because "you" are a safe driver is ignorant. To think that it will never happen to "you" is naive. It is our job to protect our children, and unfortunately, these days we do have to protect them from other drivers. Teenagers with cell phones and lack of driving experience, people too busy to drive that feel the need to multi-task and TEXT or READ while on the freeway, women putting on makeup, elderly people with lack of reflex/judgement.... so many mundane things are actually threats to our kids when they are in a car. I am so happy that companies like Graco are finally realizing the importance of RFing and also the 5pt harness, with their introductions of the MyRide65 and the Nautilus. Kudos the the AAP for finally recommending RFing until 2yrs. I wish I would have kept my now 4 & 5yr olds RFing longer(we turned them at about 2yrs.), but am glad I have now educated myself beyond what my pediatrician, the law, and the carseat manufacturers recommend; I will keep them in a 5pt. as long as possible! Now we'll have to wait for the lawmakers to catch up and start requiring citizens to be more responsible drivers! In this country the biggest problem is the WAY PEOPLE DRIVE, not the equipment we use while doing so. The number one cause of accidents is a driver deviating out of their lane, which means they are not paying attention to simply driving. We forget that it is a "privelage, not a right." People from past generations or other areas of the world can say, "well I didnt do any of that and we're all fine..." which may be true, but generally the American mentality is ME first, which means no one is looking out for your child except you....


Alyssa, good for you going above and beyond the standards. The only thing I'd be weary of is the statistics; in Sweden and other European countries car ownership and individual driving is not nearly as prevalent as it is here. Low deaths in Sweden are more likely attributed to this rather than the seat. I would be cautious as to how much this seat has actually been tested in the type of conditions that cause fatal accidents in children here. If you feel comfortable with your knowledge of the seats, and as long as the seats install properly in your cars, I'd say use the seats that are safest for your children, which is RFing and then 5pt harnessed as long as possible!! Safe and Happy Driving, mommas!

[deleted account]

Here's a link to the April Newsletter article by the American Academy of Pediatrics:
http://aapnews.aappublications.org/cgi/c...
"Keep Your Toddler in a rear-facing car seat until age 2 (not 1)"

To quote:
"New research indicates that toddlers are more than five times safer riding rear-facing in a car safety seat up to their second birthday. ...

Toddlers should remain rear-facing in a convertible car seat until they have reached the maximum height and weight recommended for the model, or at least the age of 2."

If your doctor's are giving you outdated information, print this out and show it to them!! (Though it's not uncommon for them to be behind on some of the latest research and this just came out in April of this year.) Don't assume that your doctor has the latest information about EVERYTHING all the time.

The other thing to keep in mind is that it takes at least one YEAR for the information from research studies to show up in print form and then turn into recommendations and even longer -- YEARS -- to influence laws. So the information in this AAP article was based on research done over the course of years that likely started sometime in 2000 - 2003 that is just was written up in 2007 and presented somewhere last year and made the AAP article this year. It probably won't become a law in some states until our babies are out of car seats.

Carissa - posted on 05/18/2009

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My son it 1 and weighs 20 lbs and the doctor said he's tall enough to face forward.

Joanne - posted on 05/18/2009

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The state law for Mass is 20lbs AND 1 years. I rear faced for both of my kids until they were 20lbs and 1 years old. When they hit that mark, I had them forward facing. We turned the infant seat around and did not get another one, until they out grew it, either by weight or length.

Emily - posted on 05/18/2009

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Quoting Melissa:

that groses me out vids like that. i dont know why i even watched it i was just bored but in future please do not try to change peoples minds. mother knows best and if i chose to change my child around that is my personal choice and i am not breaking the law so please stop sending me these links and msgs thankyou


 



I think you would be even more grossed out to actually witness your child being decapitated in a carseat because you turned her around too early. Sorry to be blunt dear, but thats the real world.

[deleted account]

Quoting Ninette:

They say to keep them rear facing until a year old or twenty pounds. If your child is older than a year old and does not weight twenty pounds then do not face them forward. The car seats makers know all the safety rules with the carseats they would not put an age and weight limit on car seats if they didnt know what was safe. Also they say if your car seat is older than 6 years old that it is no longer good to use. That each year car seats are updated to the best safety of our children


Actually, as of April of this year, The American Academy of Pediatrics (if that's the "they" you're referring to) recommends keeping children RF until the age of 2 years or until they outgrow the limits of their car seat (whichever is later). I'll look for that link and post it here. So that recommendation for one year AND 20 pounds is "officially" outdated. Given that recommendation, EXTENDED rear facing doesn't actually begin until the child reaches the age of 2 years and children should be rear facing until that time. Granted the law states differently, but the medical recommendation is different. Food for thought perhaps?

Ninette - posted on 05/18/2009

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They say to keep them rear facing until a year old or twenty pounds. If your child is older than a year old and does not weight twenty pounds then do not face them forward. The car seats makers know all the safety rules with the carseats they would not put an age and weight limit on car seats if they didnt know what was safe. Also they say if your car seat is older than 6 years old that it is no longer good to use. That each year car seats are updated to the best safety of our children

Bethany - posted on 05/18/2009

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We are rear-facing as long as possible. My daughter is a little over a year, and still isn't even close to the weight limit for her infant carseat. She is getting close to the height, though. I would much rather run the small risk of breaking a leg than the major risk of breaking a neck.

Bethany - posted on 05/18/2009

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Quoting Melissa:

personally i wouldnt worry about it just change them to forward facing. mine has been forward facing since she was around 5 months


 



Wow.  Good thing not all parents think this way.  :-/

Sarah - posted on 05/18/2009

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Just as a note about car seat laws...it often takes an unfortunately long amount of time for the law to catch up with what authorities on the matter actually say. I mean, look at all of the diet drugs that were sold as "safe". It took a significant number of patients dying or having severe problems before those products came off the market. Look at the booster laws...it took years worth of evidence before those were implemented, and still they are fought hard in many areas even though we know that it is safer. Laws are just so often years behind. So while I respect the right of other parents to make decision for their own children, I would caution anyone who felt like just because something was NOT illegal, that automatically meant it was "safe" or was the BEST option. I would hope that anyone reading this thread would at least be prompted to seek out information for yourself from multiple, reputable sources (some of which have been sited right here, but much more is available via the web or by your local car seat tech) before deciding that just because you've met whatever the minimum is in your area, that your child is guaranteed to be safe.

For me personally (and again, I know this may vary for others and that is fine), I could not live with myself if I met only the suggested or legislated minimums and then was in an accident and something happened to my son. I would always have the knowledge that I knew there was evidence indicating that there were safer options and that it might have made a difference.

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My almost 3yo is RF in a Britax Marathon. He used to be RF in a Roundabout but outgrew it by height. He sees perfectly fine out of the window and is very happy to sit in his seat. He's about 27lbs and will remain RF until he outgrows the limits of his seat. My 7yo dd is in a Britax Regent (5pt harness) which is FF but still sits with her feet criss-crossed as her feet dangle and do not touch the floor. So she's sitting the same way my almost 3yo does RF. Her seat has a very wide base (the Regent is often referred to as a "Lazy Boy" because it's so big and plush) even though she's above average in height for her age, she's just not comfortable with dangling feet. The rare occasions she sits in a booster, her feet dangle, but there's no room for her to sit comfortably and compared to her 5pt harness, she feels uncomfortable and unsafe (she's told me this - unprompted.

Yes, people do feel very passionately about their choices in how they choices around car seat safety as I've been round and round on this topic on various parenting boards. My goal has always been for people to make informed, educated, decisions whatever they choose whether they agree with me or not. We can agree to disagree. The facts are the facts and the statistics are the statistics. I am a safe driver and I've been driving for over 20 years with no accidents or tickets - not even a speeding ticket! However, I cannot control how others drive and whether or not they choose to obey the law and I have to take that into consideration.

My own personal choice is to ERF and to keep my kids in a 5pt harness until they outgrow the limits of the seats out there. My 7yo has less than a year left in car safety seats "according to the law" but not according to her seat (and me!).

People should be aware that the laws provide the bare MINIMUM safety standards. It's like getting a D in a class in order to pass instead of striving for the A. They aren't the OPTIMAL standards by far. Just the MINIMUM standards. That's why some companies try to exceed these standards and those are the ones that some of us try to pay more attention to.

Tamara - posted on 05/18/2009

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Quoting Melissa:

that groses me out vids like that. i dont know why i even watched it i was just bored but in future please do not try to change peoples minds. mother knows best and if i chose to change my child around that is my personal choice and i am not breaking the law so please stop sending me these links and msgs thankyou


I'm sorry that a simple crash test video grossed you out.  However it shows the very simple physics involved in a crash and their effects on a child in a ffing vs. rfing seat.  Study after study shows it is 5x safer to keep a child rearfacing as long as possible.  There are much worse videos on YouTube showing the consequences of turning ffing too soon.  Perhaps it would be more palatable to read about internal decaptitation, spinal cord injuries, etc.



 



http://www.cpsafety.com/articles/stayrea...



 



This is a site that lists the benefits of ERF.  Please take the time to read it.

Mel - posted on 05/18/2009

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that groses me out vids like that. i dont know why i even watched it i was just bored but in future please do not try to change peoples minds. mother knows best and if i chose to change my child around that is my personal choice and i am not breaking the law so please stop sending me these links and msgs thankyou

Tamara - posted on 05/17/2009

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Quoting Melissa:




exactly! if it wasnt safe it would nto be allowed. in australia its 6-8 kilos, most babies reach this around 4-6 months. mine is almost 8 kilos now at 13 months but she is a very rare case but we put her forward facing at around 5 months.






To those who are being judgemental if it was that dangerous they would not say that it was ok. Every country is different so no one shoudl be judged by obeying the law





http://www. youtube. com/watch?v=G8mFsXNXOLw



 



Take out the spaces and please watch this video.  It was the one video that showed both my husband and I w/o a doubt that ERF is the best course of action to keep our LO safe in the car.

Tamara - posted on 05/17/2009

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Quoting Melissa:



exactly! if it wasnt safe it would nto be allowed. in australia its 6-8 kilos, most babies reach this around 4-6 months. mine is almost 8 kilos now at 13 months but she is a very rare case but we put her forward facing at around 5 months.






To those who are being judgemental if it was that dangerous they would not say that it was ok. Every country is different so no one shoudl be judged by obeying the law







 



This is the video that convinced both my husband and I w/o a doubt that rearfacing as long as possible was the way to go.  Watch it and than reconsider whether or not you really want your child forward facing this early.

Mel - posted on 05/17/2009

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Quoting Katie:

Sorry to be ignorant but why do people think it is safer to have your baby/child in a rear facing seat. I'm sure over here in England that you can put a baby in a forward facing car seat once they are 20 lbs which for my first daughter was when she was about a year but my second child (who is now 7 months) is already over 17 lbs so will probably be younger when she is big enough to go in a forward facing - she is already getting a bit too big for her rear facing one as she is so long. I'm sure its more comfortable for them to be in a forward facing car seat and then they can also see more of whats going on.


 



exactly! if it wasnt safe it would nto be allowed. in australia its 6-8 kilos, most babies reach this around 4-6 months. mine is almost 8 kilos now at 13 months but she is a very rare case but we put her forward facing at around 5 months.



To those who are being judgemental if it was that dangerous they would not say that it was ok. Every country is different so no one shoudl be judged by obeying the law

Mel - posted on 05/17/2009

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Quoting Katie:

Sorry to be ignorant but why do people think it is safer to have your baby/child in a rear facing seat. I'm sure over here in England that you can put a baby in a forward facing car seat once they are 20 lbs which for my first daughter was when she was about a year but my second child (who is now 7 months) is already over 17 lbs so will probably be younger when she is big enough to go in a forward facing - she is already getting a bit too big for her rear facing one as she is so long. I'm sure its more comfortable for them to be in a forward facing car seat and then they can also see more of whats going on.


 



exactly! if it wasnt safe it would nto be allowed. in australia its 6-8 kilos, most babies reach this around 4-6 months. mine is almost 8 kilos now at 13 months but she is a very rare case but we put her forward facing at around 5 months.



To those who are being judgemental if it was that dangerous they would not say that it was ok. Every country is different so no one shoudl be judged by obeying the law

Valerie - posted on 05/17/2009

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My understanding is the child has to be 1 years old and 20lbs at least that is the law in my state. My child turned 1 in December so I kept her rear facing until spring. If you are really concerned call your pediatrician they should be up to date on that stuff or call your local police station.

Tiffany - posted on 05/17/2009

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Quoting Kristy:

After seeing that my 6 month old daughter will be in a rear facing car seat for as long as she can. I've already looked into car seats that can be rear facing for when she gets out of the infant carrier style! Thank you for sharing this important info.



We got our daughter a convertable carseat when she was about 6 months. It's by Graco. It is 5-40lbs rear facing and i believe 40-55 or 60lb forward facing. But she loves it,and she seems very comfortable in it. she is now 9 months and weighs about 22lbs, and is no where near ready to be forward facing... she has alot of inches to go yet! We got ours at shopko, very resonalby priced. Just thought i'd throw this out there!

Dawn - posted on 05/17/2009

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Wow...reading through the posts, people have really strong opinions about this. I always followed the 1 year, 20 lbs rule. The laws are constantly changing on this, so I will continue to follow what is required--For example, my oldest is 6 and when he was three we were advised he could go into a booster seat (using the regular car seat belt). Now, that isn't allowed until 4 or 5 and 40 lbs. While it may be safer to keep them rear-facing, I think there are lots of factors to consider. For my third, she is a tiny little thing and barely 20 lbs at 14 months...but we have turned her because of the non-stop screaming--and I DO MEAN non-stop--when rear-facing. We still waited until a year, but simply could not torture ourselves and the other kids past that. And yes, as soon as we turned her around, it stopped.
I think it is important to do everything you can to keep them as safe as possible...but also to remember that you can only do so much. It's about balance. In the U.S. we live in one of the safest times ever (crime rates, etc) and yet fear is at one of it's highest rates ever. Something to keep in mind.

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Quoting Allison:




That isn't true at all. It depends on the car seat and the car. We had our daughter's car seat inspected by two different people who were certified to do inspections, and it was correctly installed. But she had no leg room, nor could we easily get her in and out of the car seat without her bonking her head on the top of our car (because of the como's side impact wings and our outback's slanted doorframes.)





I agree with this, that is why you can go to stores like Babies R Us, or Buy buy baby and take the car seat out to your car and fit it to your car. So that you find a seat that is right for your car and your child. I ended up with three different convertibles because the first one (hand me down from my son) would not fit my dd properly. Then the second one fit my vehicle, but when we bought a new vehicle it didn't! LOL So I bought her last convertible at that point. My child's safety is important, as it is to most everyone I know! :D

Adf0905 - posted on 05/17/2009

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Quoting Christin:
Also if a rear facing car seat is installed correctly, which 90% are not, then they should have no leg problems, especially at your daughters age. 


That isn't true at all. It depends on the car seat and the car. We had our daughter's car seat inspected by two different people who were certified to do inspections, and it was correctly installed. But she had no leg room, nor could we easily get her in and out of the car seat without her bonking her head on the top of our car (because of the como's side impact wings and our outback's slanted doorframes.)

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