We all know that infants should be rear facing in their infant seats in the car. But what happens when the child outgrows the infant seat? Many parents want to turn their children forward as fast as possible but of course we all want our children to be as safe as possible. This was the main concern for me when choosing a car seat for Dexter. I spent many evenings reading reviews and safety rating before coming to a decision on which car seat to purchase. The problem was the price, because the rear facing car seats weren't readily available in the UK at the time they cost a flipping fortune! But can you really put a price on child safety?
Not that I needed convincing but here were the main benefits of keeping Dexter in a rear facing child seat for as long as possible:
Safer in an accident
The most dangerous car accidents are frontal collisions which in turn are also the most common. They represent the accidents where the highest speeds and greatest forces are at play When a child is forward facing in a frontal collision they are flung forward in the seat, being caught by the harness. This puts stress on the neck, spine and internal organs.
Children aren't small adults
We as adults are fairly sturdy old things where as or children are still growing and developing. Their heads are 25% of their body weight, if the proportions were the same in a fully grown adult we would fall over! The child's skeleton has not yet been solidified into bone, but is still soft, mainly consisting of cartilage. When subjected to violent force the skeleton will bend rather than break. On an adult the rib cage protects our vital organs such as heart, lungs, spleen etc. On a child this is not the case. When flung against the harness in a forward facing child seat the rib cage cannot cope with the force on impact and the organs inside might be injured and damaged. Same thing with the neck. The spine has not solidified. It is soft and might stretch and snap, in which case the bone marrow is the only thing left preventing internal decapitation
So now that you can see my reasons, which car seat did I go for?
The BeSafe iZi Comfort X3 £299.99
After reading several reviews this car seat came up trumps in nearly all tests even without the ISOfix (hubby's car doesn't have it). It was super easy to install in both cars and whenever we are ready it's very simple to turn forward facing with a seatbelt (rearwards up to age 4 or 5) You can see why we are fans of BeSafe and today it was announced that In the respected tests by large Swedish Insurance Company Folksam,BeSafe received one "Best in Test" and two "Good Choice" Awards.
Are you a rear-facing car seat fan? I'd love to know.