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9kg/9 month car seat at less than 9kg - would you?

(26 Posts)
Hadeda Tue 07-Oct-08 11:04:19

My DD is 9 months old now but weighs only 8.2kgs so she's still in the rear facing car seat. She absolutely hates her it and almost every journey is a nightmare with her screaming hysterically sad.
I went to visit family abroad a few weeks ago and they said we could borrow their car seat. When I got there I found it was the 9kg one (i.e. next one up, which is front facing). She was SO much better in it - a little bit of crying now and then but for the most part she was happy or slept.

I'm thinking of moving her up to the next car seat even though she's a bit under the weight limit. I believe one of the "requirements" for the next seat is that the child can hold his/her head up well - which she can being 9 months. She is little so many other babies would be able to move to this car seat before 9 months so I don't think the age is critical. But I haven't been able to find info on whether the weight is critical either - i.e. can they move up at 9 months even though they're not 9kg, or is that really unsafe?

Any views?
(The only family we have in the UK live an hour and a half away, so just not going on car trips is not really an option unless we never want to see family...)

Bramshott Tue 07-Oct-08 11:12:22

Hmm, I'm afraid I really wouldn't. They are much safer in the rear-facing seats - both of my DDs were in them until well past 12 months as they are small. Could you try one of those mobiles which fixes onto the car window so she has something to look at? FWIW - it may well have been the novelty of the new seat - my DD2 was an angel in her new seat for about a week, but now is as bad in the forward facing one as she ever was in the old one - perhaps more so because she can see us so she feels the need to tell us how unhappy she is!

ImnotMamaGbutsheLovesMe Tue 07-Oct-08 11:15:14

I wouldn't either. Try giving her some books or a cuddly to play with. She will soon get used to the seat and if she cries, she cries I'm afraid. The weights are there for a reason and that is to keep your child safe. It is the weight that is crucial not the age of the child.

meep Tue 07-Oct-08 11:20:45

I would leave her in the rear facing seat - it i ssafer. My dd has just moved into the forward facing one at 15mo! She loved it for the first journery but now just yells at me for attention because she can see me (sounds like your dd2 Bramshott grin)

TheProvincialLady Tue 07-Oct-08 11:23:55

I wouldn't. The guidelines aren't just about holding her head up well, but about the strength of the muscles, bones and ligaments of her neck. The worst case scenario is that in an accident with a child who was not ready for a forward facing seat, they could be decapitatedsad I just don't think it is worth the risk - but you have my sympathy as DS was a total nightmare in his rear facing carseat. Safety first though and all that.

Bramshott Tue 07-Oct-08 11:24:39

grin Meep - DD2 (18 months) has just learned to say "out" and makes great use of it!!

MurderousMarla Tue 07-Oct-08 11:26:50

I really do sympathise but wouldn't move her yet. If you and your Dp/H travel together can one of you sit in the back with your DD to entertain her? I did this when I could until DS outgrew his baby seat (at 10 months)

harpomarx Tue 07-Oct-08 11:27:15

definitely not. DD was in her rear facing till over 12 months, and she was a big baby.

yes, she did get restless in it towards the end of that time but safety is so much more important than putting up with a few more months of whinginess in the car. And I think 8.2 kgs is a fair bit under the weight limit.

rosbif Tue 07-Oct-08 11:30:08

It is the head up thing which dictates. I agree with the other posters but we did put DS3 in at slightly under 9 kilos for unavoidable reasons. She should be heavy enough very soon

Hadeda Tue 07-Oct-08 11:43:49

Ok, she'll just have to put up with it for a bit longer then! As has been said, it must be safety first.
I do hope that she is happier in the new seat when we get there though and it's not just the novelty - 4 more years of screaming may be more than I can stand...!!

mum2oneloudbaby Tue 07-Oct-08 11:56:51

until i read bramshott's post i was so looking forward to putting dd in front facing seat when big enough to stop glass shattering screaming - now i just feel depressed sad. not sure car windows can take much more wink

Neeerly3 Tue 07-Oct-08 12:01:57

don't move her yet, not safe. In the event of an accident the seat won't do it's job properly as she isn't heavy enough and the whiplash effect could be fatal (sorry to be brutal but it's a real possibility). You wouldn't have a leg to stand on as regards suing the seat company should the worst happen as you decided to put her in the incorrect seat at the incorrect time.

PLEASE just put up with the screaming or not drive and get people to visit you if it really is that bad....better an unhappy child, than a dead one - sorry.

Bramshott Tue 07-Oct-08 12:06:42

There is definitely a market for a car with a taxi-type glass screen between the front and the back - I've often thought it would be much safer!

marmadukescarlet Tue 07-Oct-08 12:10:27

What has she got to look at? My Ds was small and had to stay in his for a while. He wasn't so keen on the black and white galley pic, but I bought him this plastic mirror style thing and looking at himself kept him amused for ages.

mrsmcdreamy Tue 07-Oct-08 14:23:26

we put ds in at just under 9kg (maybe about 8.7) again because he was MISERABLE facing backwards. felt happy about it because he was very strong (holding head & sitting up). Long journeys were SO much more manageable after that.

Neeerly3 Tue 07-Oct-08 14:37:55

mrsmcdreamy - but what about the 'whatif's'? what if you had hit a car head on, your childs weight would not have stopped him whipping forwards and then backwards again and severley damaging if not breaking his neck.....i simply don't understand why people take that risk......

Ebb Tue 07-Oct-08 16:30:35

Is she in a first stage 'carry tot' type car seat? Maybe she feels too squashed. Could you get a combination seat that is bigger but can be rear facing then forward facing?

ImnotMamaGbutsheLovesMe Tue 07-Oct-08 16:42:15

rosbif I am interested in hearing what the unavoidable reasons were.

Ebb be careful with that, not all of them are.

Ebb Tue 07-Oct-08 17:00:22

Well I was kind of expecting the op to be sensible enough to check that the seat could be rear or forward facing. grin

berolina Tue 07-Oct-08 17:16:37

The new recommendations are for children to be rear facing until at least 9kg/20lbs or 1 year. ds1 was always very small and light and we had him rear facing until he was well over 2 - tbh I feel uncomfortable when he's forward facing even now (3.5 and 12kg), especially because his head is quite big in proportion to his body. Fortunately we don't have a car or take car trips regularly.

In Scandinavia it is normal for children to be rear facing unti, age 4. Much safer, I think, but the seats are so difficult to get where we are (Germany - and in the UK too). We ordered a seat that was advertised as forward and rear facing only to find it could only be RF until 9kg angry.

ImnotMamaGbutsheLovesMe Tue 07-Oct-08 17:21:36

Ebb, tbh if they thinking it was okay to use a seat that was inapropriate for their child I wouldn't expect anything.

There are seats marketted as 0-4 years iirc but I fail to see how they can be when a newborn has completely different needs to a 4 year old.

Ebb Tue 07-Oct-08 17:47:45

I think they come with inserts to give newborns more support and a slightly different position. I've never used one though so could be wrong.

lljkk Tue 07-Oct-08 17:53:20

To title Q: I would and did (blush ahem, crawls under rock). That said, we got a bigger rear-facing carseat for DC2, so didn't have the problems thereafter. With first child I didn't realise how varible the infant car seats can be in size.

Amy78 Tue 07-Oct-08 21:09:21

My DD is 7 months and we have just moved her into a front facing car seat (she weighs just over 8 kilos) as she is quite tall (in the 91st centile) and she was completely squashed in her her rear facing seat and was pushing herslef off of the back seat making the car seat unstable!!

She's also a wee toughie who's been sitting up independently for ages.

Neeerly3 Tue 07-Oct-08 21:15:32

amy, great that your 7mo is so advanced, but my DS did this, pushed his legs against the back seat and stood himself up so was 'wearing' his seat on his back! I rang britax and asked if we could move him as he was in effect not secure in a rear facing baby carrier - they said NO WAY! We bought a britax seat that was rear facing til 9kg and forward facing after that - the seat was therefore bigger than a baby carrier but still pointing in the right direction and DS was safe again.

I am serious about this having seen road accidents involving small children/babies incorrectly secured....your baby is the most precious cargo you will ever carry and they may be the most funny/advanced/strongest necked kid that you know, but those seat limits are there for a reason, 8 kilos simply isn't heavy enough to withstand a head on collision or being hit from behind when they are forward facing.

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