To keep the DC in car seats for over 5.5 hours?(13 Posts)
I am going to have to make a 5.5 hour car journey soon on my own with 2 DCs. DC1 is a good traveller. DC2 who is 17 months is not, gets bored and screams/cries loudly till journey over. My plan is to set off around 6.30 in the evening in the hope that they will both fall asleep and I can make it most of the way without the screaming. I would make at least one stop but obvs would have to stay next to the car. DH thinks I'm being crazy as means I will not have option of using a toilet. I am more worried about the DC staying sleeping in their seats that long. Is it only bad for small babies to stay in over 2 hours or older ones too. What would you do in my situ? Any good ideas to somehow make this less horrendous?
I know there are recommendations on how long young babies should stay in cars seats. Not sure about older kids though.
I do think your dh is right about the toilet though. But then I can't go 5.5 hours without peeing
If I need a wee I have to stop because it's distracting.
I wouldn't as their necks won't be very well supported in car seats. If they fall asleep pretty much straight away and slew until you reach your destination their chins could be lolling on their chest for 5 hours- if that were me I'd wake up in a world of pain.
I think it's mostly for new babies so I would worry
If everyone sleeps, stop at a lay by for a quick pee if you are bursting, if not, then you can all stop and stretch your legs, let them choose a snack from services etc. Do you have iPads? I know lots of people prefer to make car journeys educational, but not me! I give them iPads and leave them to it!
I think it's fine as a one-off. But I'd find it hard to go 5.5 hours without a pee. She-wee and a bottle?
What about in car DVD players?
My mum and dad for some for when they are taking their grandkids on long journeys. Worth their weight in gold.
You would need to make sure you have a longish dvd as the 17 month old won't be able to press play, change it etc.
How old is the other child?
We do this regularly (well, 4 hour journeys regularly and the occasional 6 hour journey). DD is 3 now and in an ERF seat. The only time her head lols forward is if we have to brake hard for any reason.
Will the kids watch an iPad or anything in the back of the car? I might be inclined to set off a bit earlier, immediately after dinner. Let them watch tv in the back, stop after a few hours, get everyone out, go to the loo, stretch legs, run around, change kids into PJs and then set off again, no iPad this time and hope they fall asleep.
Works for my DD anyway. Good luck!
A lot of petrol stations have toilets. If your DC are asleep, I'd park up, lock car and nip in and use the loo. Buy a token bar of chocolate if you feel odd about just going in for the toilet, though I doubt it would matter. You'd be in and out in a minute or two.
As for the car seats, we regularly made five hour journeys to my parents' house with our DDs. They are 17, 16 and 7 now, and perfectly fine and unaffected by it.
5.5 hours is fine for a 17 month old in a car seat - it's not like you do it every day. Do you have a car seat that reclines slightly? That helps, to make sure they sleep with head back. Slumped forward would be awful for a long journey.
We have done an 8 hour journey a few times with a child under two. Agree that evening is a good idea, they should just sleep. I have a couple of child friendly CDs (music, but also stories) which my 2 year old enjoys. If it was day time I'd suggest one of those crayola no mess drawing pads/pens if 17 month old likes that kind of thing. That occupied mine for a while on our last car journey.
The lack of loo break for 5.5 hours would be the worst bit for me! Just make sure you don't drink tea/coffee before you set off!!
Thanks everyone! The journey home will be with DH as well and will be in the day, so will look into getting a portable DVD player for them to watch and let them have the iPad. I think I might risk the 5.5 hours at bedtime and let them sleep on the way there and hope for the best with their necks. Think little one will be ok as has slightly reclining seat. Other DC is 4 and has a head rest but he does tend to lollop. I just think any entertainment I provide will lead to fights, throwing, dropping! crying, tantrums, which isn't as bad when there's one person driving and the other one to referee/pick stuff up off the floor. I will be careful what I drink and take a potty for emergencies
Having just done a long trip at the weekend with a 5 and 2 year old, 3 hours was pushing the limits of their comfort and we had to have a break. My 2 year old is quite happy for a long time with a bag of little snacks to work through and some little books to look at; the older one was quite well occupied with Where's Wally. If I were you I would plan for one break, so look for likely stopping points, obviously if everyone's ok, asleep etc then keep going. My youngest is in erf so v comfortable sleeping, older ds upright but never slumps forward when asleep.
I would probably make it 6 hours so you can have a half hour break at a services or something. I hate sitting in a car for 5.5 hours without a break and I am an adult!
Yeah, it's fine. I'd much rather do a long journey in one hit with the dc sleeping in the back.
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