Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Extended Rear Facing

I've had car seats on the brain for some time. Rear facing car seats to be more specific.

                                                         Sahar at 7 months

My daughter is in a infant to toddler rear facing seat that goes up to 35lbs or approximately 15kg, at the moment she is 11 months old  8.6 kg's and 69cm ( 19 lbs and 27 inches), with her first birthday fast approaching I have no intention of putting her forward facing, I have decided to hold off as long as possible.

How long? I can't say at this exact moment, time, height and weight will account for some of the decision but I am thinking somewhere around her 3rd or 4th birthday.

I know what your thinking, crazy right? but is it really?

More and more people are leaning towards extended rear facing, country laws are slowly adapting to this mentality in order to keep children safe and save lives.

European countries like Sweden extend rear facing until the age of 4, and countries like Canada, America, and New Zealand although allowing you the option to turn you child rear facing at 1 are now recommending that age be 2 and are putting in place laws to side those recommendations.

This change is due to the amount of injuries and even deaths that have been sustained to children in forward facing seats, a child is less likely to be seriously injured in a car accident if rear facing.  A child facing forward may have their arms, legs and head thrown violently forward which can cause them to break or even sever their spinal cord.

                            The video above shows the difference upon impact at 50km/ hour.

Common questions about extended rear facing that I have noticed with friends and well surfing the net; 

Aren't my child's legs too long, wont they me uncomfortable?
Unlikely, children are flexible and generally comfortable with bend or crossed legs, also many rear facing seats are slightly reclined which may actually be more comfortable if they fall asleep their heads are less likely to flop forward.

I won't be able to see my child what if something were to happen?
If something were to happen you would have to pull over anyway, if you insure there's nothing your child is able to choke on and if foods are given have low risk of choking, if its a really big concern you could always have someone sit in back with the child.

Won't their legs break in a collusion? 
I have not been able to find anything regarding children breaking their legs however what I have read is that it would be incredibly unlikely and although it is possible better then a broken neck.

My child is already forward facing they will put up a fuss if they are rear facing?
I actually read this question the other day online and am unable to find the site, however remember reading that its normal for children between 18-36 months to go through stages of independence, regardless I still think a little fuss is well worth the peace of mind.

In the end I won't think less of anyone who continues to keep their child forward facing, to each their own, but evidence shows it is a much safer way for your child to ride.

A few useful links;


Parents all want to do whats best for their little one, but if you child is under 4 why not take a second look at rear facing?

Also, random and unrelated

Back on the blogging bandwagon, have a million things on my mind I would love to share, but it is midnight NZ time and 11 month old who not only wakes early but wakes often .. so, Milk Face, over and out ..

Something is better then nothing

So after months of fighting with the moving company, I am happy to know some of my stuff will actually make it to New Zealand. How much? Not much, a few boxes and over $3,000 later, it was a hefty life lesson I will be paying off for quite some time and a lot lost.

I will most likely be getting some of my daughters personal belongings, but its exciting and nerve racking that I won't know exactly what until it gets here. I am praying that a few of my favorite sappy sentimental things will make it, but it not 'c'est la vie.'

This horrible, emotionally agonizing event taught me one thing at least, my dad is always there when I need him - going above and beyond his parental call of duty. He's always been like that so I shouldn't have expected any less of him, having said that my biggest grievance really is all the stress and finical burden that he often under go's for me, but hey maybe one day I will be able to repay the favor.