2 hours max. in car seat - how to make 3/4 hour trip?

(21 Posts)

When DD was small we travelled by plane and car for long journeys a lot (lived in Germany).

We stopped every two hours as we were also aware of the research into reduced oxygen saturation. Babies have died in car seats for this reason.

When it came to driving back to the UK (seven hours, ferry, 2 more hours) we bought a lie flat carry cot car seat which removed the issue. Then we only needed to stop when DD needed feeding. Unless you are going to do a lot of long journeys though I would just stop every couple of hours.

Startail Sun 13-Jan-13 15:03:03

My DDs are 14 and 11 when they were babies it was totally normal for them to travel in their car seats. Use them as seats at home, nap in them if they happened to fall asleep and, for many clip them into a travel system.

Many babies including DD1 (who liked being rocked in hers while we ate) spent long periods bent up in type one cars seats.

(DD2 BF while 1 ate one handed).

This is quite different to one off car trips.

delilah88 Sun 13-Jan-13 14:52:36

p.s. Bag sling looks terrifying!

delilah88 Sun 13-Jan-13 14:51:22

Bertie that is extremely useful. Thanks

TrazzleMISTLEtoes Sun 13-Jan-13 13:50:43

Thanks for clearing that up Bertie I had no idea!

<every day's a schoolday emoticon>

BertieBotts Sun 13-Jan-13 13:32:39

Sorry - the last link also includes why it's okay for the break to be short, as long as you have a break.

BertieBotts Sun 13-Jan-13 13:32:01

This is a recent article: www.which.co.uk/news/2012/09/which-warns-of-child-car-seat-risks-after-childs-death-294964/

This is where a nurse ran some tests on a certain kind of sling (which has been banned now) which had the same chin-to-chest safety problem. Scroll down past the first article bit to see the tests. babyslingsafety.blogspot.co.uk/

BertieBotts Sun 13-Jan-13 13:27:24

No it does apply every time, it's because small babies in car seats are squished up a bit and that can reduce their oxygen saturation levels especially if their chin is pushed down onto their chest.

This isn't particularly harmful in itself but if it goes on for a long time then it can make it hard for babies to take in enough oxygen, and in very rare cases it can cause suffocation. This is more likely in smaller babies or those who have any other kind of breathing difficulty like asthma or some problems caused by premature birth.

However, to "reset" their oxygen saturation levels you really only need to take them out of the seat and let them lie flat for 30 seconds or so, it doesn't have to be a long stop lasting hours before the next 2-hour stint. So with young babies this usually happens naturally, as they usually need a feed and/or nappy change about once every 2 hours or so anyway.

BrianCoxandTheTempleofDOOM Sun 13-Jan-13 13:22:22

If you are on the motorway check out a service station half way - driver will need a rest, passengers stretch their legs and baby can be taken out and have a nappy change/feed/look around.

Have been travelling up and down the country since DD was 3 months, never had a problem as always have at least one stop.

There was the time, on the M5, just me and DD (aged 8ish months) and the motorway was closed while they sorted out a crash and the air ambulance landed. DD ended up crawling along the outside lane of the motorway grin In fairness we had been stopped an hour, it was 30 degress and every other motorist was out of their car.

<wipes memory from brain again>

lagoonhaze Sun 13-Jan-13 12:42:04

Drive til driver needs a break/baby needs a change or feeding!

ThreeWheelsGood Sun 13-Jan-13 12:31:52

at 3 months won't baby need feeding before the end of the journey anyway? might as well factor in a break. we're about to do our first long drive with our 3 month old, i'm anticipating 2 stops on a trip which usually takes 3 hours.

delilah88 Sun 13-Jan-13 09:53:33

Ok thanks everyone -- DD is 3 months. Guess I took the advice too literally -- 1st baby nervous parent alert smile

ceeveebee Sun 13-Jan-13 09:44:39

How old is your DD - wont you need to stop for a feed/nappy change after a couple of hours anyway?
We drive to our parents pretty regularly which is 4 hours drive - we always stop halfway - for one thing I don't want to arrive with two screaming hungry babies!

TrazzleMISTLEtoes Sun 13-Jan-13 09:41:00

My DM lives 4 hours away. We usually have a short break after 2 hours (like you're meant to when driving anyway...).

Occasionally we power through if travelling in the evening and DC asleep. It's only babies in first stage car seats this applies to because they shouldn't lie in the same position for too long - spine development or something - but it is not going to cause lifelong problems just the once. It is, as Charlotte says, to make sure people don't keep their babies in them all day every day.

Wowserz129 Sun 13-Jan-13 09:40:53

Yes the guidelines I believe are not meant to be rigid as in every 2 hours on the stop they need a break. The two hour thing is to stop idiots having there baby in a carseat all day as obv it's bad for development. Alternatively just stop for 5 mins at a petrol station or tescos and let them out for a few mins

OhIWishThereWasABook Sun 13-Jan-13 09:38:15

Charlotte is right, occasional long trips are fine, just not to use car seats as buggy all the time. You might want a pit stop, but if baby is sleeping best to push on through in my experience.

NormaStanleyFletcher Sun 13-Jan-13 09:37:42

I thought the same as Charlotte

CharlotteBronteSaurus Sun 13-Jan-13 09:35:33

i'm sure someone will be along to correct me, but i think the guidelines are more about not wheeling your child round in a carseat all day, every day, than one-off longer journeys.

If it worries you, find somewhere to break the journey for an hour or so - in any case mine are/were to fidgety to manage without breaking the journey.

mimmytoz Sun 13-Jan-13 09:34:02

how old is your DD

ginmakesitallok Sun 13-Jan-13 09:34:00

confused Have a break in the middle? What age is DD? Won't she need a food/wee/leg stretch break anyway??

delilah88 Sun 13-Jan-13 09:32:57

The car seat says DD should be in it no longer than 2 hours, but I want to visit a friend 3/4 hours away. Will she be ok, or should I not risk it?

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