For more than 30 years, the Scandinavian brand BeSafe has been promoting rear-facing car seats for children older than 15 months. However, there are still many misconceptions circulating about sitting against the direction of travel. Is my child comfortable? Won’t he get carsick? But most of all: Is this really necessary? The answer: Yes! In this blog, we debunk the 5 most common misconceptions!
1 – “my baby is not comfortable!”
No worries! Children are much more flexible than adults. Have you ever noticed how they hold their legs in all sorts of weird positions while playing? They even prefer to sit with their legs bent or crossed! As parents, we often think it looks uncomfortable, just because it would be uncomfortable for us. But for kids it is not!
2 – “my child can’t see anything and will be bored”
Children who sit rear-facing actually see much more than you might expect! The higher seating position in these car seats allows them to see through the side and rear windows at the same time! Are you worried because you can’t see your child? BeSafe’s handy baby mirrors let you and your little one see each other throughout the journey. That way, you can always check that he or she is comfortable and content!
Tip: Remove the headrests from the back seat if you have a longer journey ahead of you! This will give your child an even wider view.
3 – “won’t my child get carsick?”
Car sickness occurs when the sense of balance registers a discrepancy between the movement perceived by the eyes and the stillness of the body. Some people are naturally more sensitive to this than others. However, the sense of balance is not yet fully developed in the toddler years, so car sickness in children often does not occur until the age of 4-6. If a child does get sick, it can have several other causes, such as certain smells in the car or what they ate that day.
4 – “our car is too small for a rear facing car seat”
Most car seats that are placed against the direction of travel are very compact. Thanks to the extendable i-Size ISOFIX base of the Modular concept, the legroom can always be adjusted. Besides, they often do no take up more space than a forward facing car seat, where 55 cm of space must be provided between the child’s nose and the car seat in front of him. This recommended distance ensures that the child does not hit the front car seat in case of an accident.
Tip: Can a passenger sit comfortably with enough legroom? Then you will have no issue fitting a rear-facing car seat in your car!
5 – “we only make short trips with our car, so it feels unnecessary …”
Unfortunately, short distances do not necessarily mean less risk of a car accident. Even at the speed of only 30 km/h, extremely high forces are exerted on both the car seat and the child. If the child is seated facing the driver, those forces mainly hit the head and neck during a frontal crash and the child is pushed out of the seat. In the case of a rear-facing car seat, the child is pushed into the seat. Rear-facing car seats therefore act as a protective shield and absorb the impact.
“But what about rear impacts?” Good question! Statistically, these types of collisions result in far fewer injuries than frontal collisions. This is because there are less forces exerted on the passengers, since both vehicles are traveling in the same direction and the forces are distributed across both cars. When children are transported against the direction of travel, they are further away from the point of impact and are therefore better protected!
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