View Full Version : Dilemma: RA or Marathon for a small baby. . .
12-05-2002, 10:15 AM
Hi, all. These boards are filled with great information and participants and I'm hoping a few of you can help me with a dilemma. My wife and I are the proud parents of a new preemie. Our daughter was born ten weeks early, on November 1, and is doing so well, that we're told she might be able to come home in the next two weeks. So, I need a car seat quick! Back when I thought I had time to choose and research I was leaning towards skipping the infant seat entirely and spending the money on a Britax convertible. After talking to the nurses, I'm still leaning that way, but which Britax for a small baby? Our daughter will probably be 4.5 to 5 pounds when she leaves the hospital. So, which Britax would make more sense? Unfortunately, there are no Britax dealers nearby, so it looks like I'll be ordering ASAP! Thanks for the help!
12-05-2002, 10:33 AM
I still think it's worth getting an infant carrier to use with a stroller (like Kolcraft Universal) that can hold it. It's just far more convenient at this age, and will make your daughter far more portable. You can get the infant carrier for under $100, and save the convertible seat for later. I can't comment on the safety issues, though, particularly for a preemie. Maybe Toby can.
12-05-2002, 10:34 AM
Hmm. Honestly, for such a small baby, I would really consider an infant seat. She's going to slump down a lot, and it's easier to get a good recline in an infant seat. I have a small baby, too, and while I LOVE the RA, I think it would have swallowed her if I'd put her in it when she was newborn. I know it's rated for 5 pounds and up, but I really think the infant seat fit her better. Also, the convenience of an infant seat is not to be underestimated. You really, REALLY will not want to have to pull her in and out of her seat every time you need to run into the dry cleaner, especially once it gets really cold. Your baby's lungs may be more fragile at first, so I'd really think about an infant seat where you can zip a warmer over the top and keep her toasty even on short errands. Like I said, I love our RA, but I would really have hated (more than I would have thought!) having to take Abigail in and out of the seat when she was so tiny. And things like grocery shopping or going to restaurants would have been out of the question.
What did the nurses say about this?
Mom to Abigail Rose
12-05-2002, 10:59 AM
The minimum weight for the Britax is 5 pounds. If she weighs less than that, you need an infant seat or even a preemie carbed. If your baby is barely 5 pounds when you bring her home, she is going to absolutely swim in the Britax seat. I thought my DD swam in it when we switched het at 7 months and 18 pounds! I would really recommend an infant seat. You and she will probably be a lot more comfy, at least initially.
If you don't want to buy one, see if a friend or neightbor has one you could borrow for a couple months until you feel comfortable using the Britax. Most people with one child have their infant seat tucked away waiting for baby #2.
And congratulations on your baby girl!
12-05-2002, 11:04 AM
I heard the same thing - that for a young infant a true infant seat provides better protection in a crash than a convertible seat because they fit better. I would think that would be even more true for a preemie.
I know that when we tried putting our son in our RA at 4 months (and 16 lb), we ended up keeping him in his snugride a few weeks longer because when he fell asleep is little head would flop so far over it just didn't look very comfortable. And he usually had pretty good neck control while awake.
There are little headrest things you can buy that have a cushion that goes around the baby's head to keep from flopping over but in my experience they don't always fit quite right and can be a pain to deal with.
mom to Gabriel 7/20/02
12-05-2002, 03:15 PM
First of all, congratulations on the birth of your daughter!
I agree with the other posters....you should get an infant seat, possibly a Graco Snugride. It will be a lot easier to carry your DD around wherever you go. I don't think you would want to take her in and out of the Britax, especially if she's asleep! It's so much easier to unhook the infant seat from the base and carry it with sleeping baby inside! I switched DD over to the Britax when she was 6mos old and she looked so tiny in it. Plus, the chest clip seems bigger on the Britax than on an infant seat, and it might be uncomfortable for your daughterat this point.
I have used both seats (Snugride and RA Advantage) and I love them both. I would not have traded my Snugride for anything. It was so convenient when we went out to shop, eat, etc. Just think, if you got the Britax now, and if you and you wife wanted to go eat somewhere, where would you put your daughter? Something else to think about..................
Good luck! :)
Mommy to Kaitlyn 11/21/01
12-05-2002, 09:33 PM
Congratulations! We had a 5 pound preemie too and he did not pass the car seat test in the hospital so they sent us home with a carbed that we used for at least two months! I actually loved it and would use it again with any newborn!!!
Just wanted to mention it in case it is an option for you.
12-10-2002, 11:54 AM
Thanks for the responses, everybody! We've decided, based on all the great advice here, to go with an infant seat. I picked up a Baby Trend Latch Loc yesterday and will try to belt it in (non-LATCH car, unfortunately) tonight. Getting it checked by a certified fit-tech tomorrow and our daughter comes home Friday!
P.S. to Emily: we haven't actually tried the car seat test, but will be doing that tomorrow. No one has mentioned the car bed, so hopefully she'll check out in the seat.
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