Your 44-Week-Old Baby - Your Baby Week By Week

Your 44-Week-Old Baby

January 8, 2019

Your 44-Week-Old Baby

Your 44-Week-Old Baby
Your 44-Week-Old Baby

When Should You Move to a Convertible Car Seat?

Noticing that snug infant car seat looks a little too…snug? While the same car seat you brought your newborn home in from the hospital can be used until baby weighs up to 35 lbs (depending on the model), many children grow too tall to ride comfortably in it by eight or nine months.

If it looks like your child is outgrowing the infant car seat, it may be time to transition to a convertible car seat. (Heads up: you probably will miss how easy it is to move them from the car to the stroller!)

What’s a convertible seat?

These seats can be installed as a rear-facing seat for babies and toddlers as well as a forward-facing seat for older children. Most convertible car seats can be used rear-facing until your child is 40-50 pounds (be sure to check the model for the correct specs!).

This higher weight limit means kids can ride rear-facing longer (no matter their age), which both Consumer Reports and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend as the safest option. In fact, the AAP recently updated their recommendations, stating that children should remain in a rear-facing car seat until they reach the highest weight or height allowed by their seat (previously, they said children should remain rear-facing until age 2).

But why should babies and toddlers stay rear-facing longer? According to the AAP, when a child rides rear-facing, the head, neck and spine are all supported by the hard shell of the car seat. This means that in a crash, the car seat itself absorbs most of the force, while keeping your kiddo’s still-developing body protected. On the other hand, when children ride forward-facing, their heads (which for toddlers are disproportionately large and heavy) are thrown forward from the force of a crash, which can result in serious spine and head injuries.

Keep in mind: some convertible seats also transform into a booster seat for big kids, so it’s an important purchase that can last for years.

Tips for Keeping Baby Healthy at Daycare

Whether you’re just starting daycare or your little one has been going for several months, you may feel like there’s a new illness coming home with them more often than usual (especially during cold and flu season).

From pink eye to runny noses, fevers to stomach bugs, when a group of kids spends a lot of time together in one shared space, it can become a breeding ground for germs. The good news is that being exposed to viruses and bacteria now is actually helping to build up and strengthen your child’s immune system. So those pre-school and elementary years may not be so bad.

Tips to keep your child healthy:

  • Make sure they’re eating a diet packed with nutritious food (lots of fruits, veggies, and omega-3s!) and getting plenty of rest.
  • Wash their hands upon arriving home (some parents swear by a nightly bath too).
  • When you’re dropping them off at daycare, do a scan of the space to make sure a sink and/or hand sanitizer is in easy reach for caregivers so they can clean their hands frequently. If you have concerns, ask how often they wash their hands during the day to minimize the spread of germs.
  • Ask how often toys are cleaned/sanitized.
  • Abide by your daycare’s sick policy and hope other parents do the same! These policies vary from daycare to daycare, but most often have guidelines to ensure children do not come to daycare when they are contagious or have a fever (the degree of fever can also vary from place to place). As hard as it is to miss a day of work last minute when your baby is sick, it helps protect healthy children and stop the spread of the bug du jour.
  • Talk to your pediatrician about vitamins and probiotics that may help boost your child’s immune system.
  • Make sure your child’s immunizations are up to date, including a flu shot if they are older than six months.
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