The American Academy of Pediatrics’ suggestion has been to keep a child in a rear-facing seat till she’s at least 1 year and 20 pounds.
However a new research study has found that it’s five times more secure for your 1-year-old to ride facing backward than forward. Because of this new research, experts now recommend that you keep your toddler’s convertible car seat facing backwards up until she’s at least 2-years-old or has actually reached the seat’s height and weight limits for the rear position (generally 36 inches and 30 to 35 pounds).
For safety’s sake, it’s best to keep your child rear-facing until she reaches the seat’s optimum height or weight limitation.
Lots of parents used to turn the seat to deal with front as soon as their child celebrated her first birthday. But in 2011 the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) revised its policy, mentioning a study that discovered children below 2 are 75 percent less most likely to be killed or hurt in a car crash if they’re in a rear-facing safety seat.
Now both the AAP and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recommend children deal with backwards up until they outgrow their seat. That suggests most children ought to stay in a rear-facing car seat up until they’re at least 2 or 3 years of ages.
Why rear-facing is much better
Really kids are specifically at risk for head and spinal cord injuries since their bones and ligaments are still establishing. Their heads are also proportionately bigger than their necks, so the structural support system is still a little unsteady. Rear-facing seats offer the best assistance to your child’s head, neck, and spinal column, and avoid your child’s head from being discarded from his body in case of a car crash.
Although the rate of death from motor vehicle crashes in children below 12 has actually gone down significantly– dropping 45 percent between 2000 and 2010– they’re still the leading cause of unexpected death in children older than 1.
When your child outgrows the height and weight limitations of a rear-facing baby seat, you still have the alternative of moving him into a convertible seat with a higher height and weight limit. That method, you can keep him rear-facing a little longer, and when he’s all set to ride facing forward, the convertible seat will still fit him.
Is it safe to keep my child rear-facing if her legs seem too long?
When being in a rear-facing car seat, many toddlers have restricted legroom. Their legs usually touch the car seat behind them and might even need to be bent or crossed to fit.
This can be troubling to some parents who stress that the child is uneasy. Or worse, that her legs could be hurt in the event of a crash. However professionals say that’s not the case.
Rear-facing safety seat are not just even more efficient at preventing fatal injuries (in addition to those that could permanently disable a child), however they’re also better at securing your child’s limbs.
” In a forward-facing safety seat during an accident, your child’s arms and legs fly forward and are most likely to be injured,” states Ben Hoffman, a nationally acknowledged injury avoidance professional and pediatrician at the Doernbecher Children’s Healthcare facility, Oregon Health & Science University. “In a rear-facing safety seat, the chance of injuries to the limbs in a crash is less than 1 in 10,000.”
So it’s still the most safe position, even for kids who look restricted in a rear-facing seat. As long as kids are within the height and weight limitations of the seat, they’re probably rather comfy, too.
Numerous rear-facing safety seat now accommodate kids who weigh 40, 45, or even 50 pounds, and depend on 49 inches tall. (Numerous kids exceed the height limitation long before the weight limit.) Hoffman suggests keeping your child in the best seat option for as long as possible and relocating to the next step just when you definitely need to.
More info on extended rear-facing seats
Each year, the AAP updates its safety seat guide, consisting of advice on how to set up a safety seat effectively. It likewise compares seats by weight and height limits in addition to price and notes the results.
The BabyCenter Community has a large and active group for parents intrigued in keeping their kids in rear-facing car seats for as long as possible. You can ask concerns and get advice by checking out the Extended Rear-Facing group.