Car Seat Safety for Premature Babies!

(Last Updated On: November 23, 2022)

Car Seat Safety for Premature Babies!

Car seat safety is especially important for premature babies, who can be so small that they can barely fit in a car seat or have breathing problems that make it difficult for them to breathe easily while sitting in one. By choosing the right car seat and correctly positioning your premature baby, you can ensure that your baby is safe in the car.

What Type of Car Seat is best for a Premature Baby?

Choosing the right car seat is one of the most important steps in ensuring the car seat’s safety for your premature baby. Many premature babies go below the lower weight limit for many car seats, so choosing a seat that will fit a very young baby is important.

Generally, you can choose from two types of seats:

  • A baby seat is just a car seat for toddlers. Infant carriers have a handle and come with a base that is fixed in the car so the seat can be easily removed to carry the baby.
  • A convertible car seat can face rearward for infants and older babies or face forward for toddlers. Convertible car seats do not have handles, so they cannot be used as baby carriers.

No matter what type of car seat you choose, choose one that will fit a very young child. All car seats have shoulder straps that can be adjusted based on the baby’s size; Look for the lowest setting 8 inches from the seat or lower.

Also, look for a car seat with a crotch strap or a buckle position that can be adjusted to fit closer to a smaller baby. Finally, look at the weight limit. Babies as small as 4lbs. can be seated on convertible car seats.

How should you position premature child in a car?

Choosing the right car seat is only the first step in making the car seat safe for premature babies.

If your baby was healthy at birth or was born prematurely, you can have an appointment with a professional or physical therapist to learn how to position your baby in a car seat. When your baby is in the car seat, you should not be able to pinch the seat belt. The breast clip should be in the middle of your chest, about armpit level.


If your baby is not securely seated in your car seat with the straps in the smallest settings, your therapist can show you how to use blanket rolls and a washcloth to improve the fit. Only use blanket rolls when instructed by your caregiver or physical therapist and show you how.

Positioning Aids:

Certain car seats include assistance with positioning that provides additional cushioning to help keep babies straight in the car seat. They’re fine provided they’re included in the car seat; however, don’t use any of the positioning aids you purchase separately because they are not mend to use with the car seat for safety reasons.


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