Updated at: 04-08-2022 - By: Helen Skeates

It was reported a few years ago that an 11-week-old baby died in a car seat while sleeping. In fact, that wasn’t the first time it had happened. One study found that car accidents involving young children are significantly more likely to be sleep-related than other types of accidents.

As a result, parents are hesitant to put their children to sleep in the back seat of their vehicles.

Because you care about your child’s safety, you’ll want to learn about the best practices for keeping babies safe when riding in car seats.

Tips on Getting your baby sleep in a car seat

There are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind while purchasing a car seat for your child. It can be difficult to find a car seat for a larger child, like I did, if you have a large child. Buying an infant insert can help alleviate this issue by elevating the newborn’s position in the carrier, allowing them to sleep more soundly.

Sleeping Babies in Car Seats | Taking Cara Babies

In addition, before putting them to sleep, make sure you feed them, if required, so that they are well-fed when they awaken. Serotonin, for example, is a hormone that helps control our moods, as well as making us sleepy at nighttime, through feedings.

They won’t have to worry about reflux when they’re sleeping.

-The next step is a swaddle or other type of sleep sack, which is essential. SwaddleMe was a favorite of mine, and it worked perfectly for my son! A few newborns aren’t happy when their arms are tied behind their backs, so try both methods until you find what works best.

We were fortunate enough to avoid any problems with this at all because he was unable to raise his arms once they were in the sacks!

As a final precaution, consider putting a picture of yourself near their cribs or car seats in case they wake up afraid and alone. As soon as they see your face (and, if possible, the scent of breast milk), they’ll quiet down! The best of luck to you!

How do you carry an infant car seat without it hurting?

An infant car seat can be heavy. Here are a few pointers on how to do it safely:

  • Carrying the carrier should be done with two hands. Be sure to use your shoulder for support if you’re holding something with just one hand. While doing this, avoid bending at the waist!
  • Make sure your shoulders are tucked in and your head is held high.- Carry a water bottle or wear flip flops so that you may remove one of your hands if necessary.
  • When walking with a baby in tow, lean slightly forward rather than backward, which can put tension on the lower back muscles. Use BOTH arms equally; don’t lean backwards.”
  • A baby carrier should only be worn on your front, and never your back. For your own safety as well as the safety of your child, do not engage in this activity.
  • Rule of thumb: Don’t do or change how you do something if it hurts or doesn’t feel right to begin with. Keep a few nibbles in your pockets for when you need them.
  • If you’re traveling with a baby who isn’t used to being carried around (such as a newborn), think ahead about where you’ll stop for breaks along the way. If you’re apprehensive about going out alone with your baby, don’t do it. Even if you’re just out to have fun, things can turn difficult.
  • Just remember that this is your first outing with a baby in a backpack. Friends and family members who want to hold the baby for a long period of time may want to help out, so check if there’s a way they can carry some of the weight so you don’t have to put all of your weight on one side.
  • Maintain a balanced load distribution by using backpacks that sit away from your shoulders. This reduces the strain on lower backs and joints and helps maintain proper hip alignment.
  • Keep in mind that we’re still discussing little infants! While kids won’t mind a long walk in the future, you should check into strollers and baby carriers that can manage some uneven terrain while they’re still too little to appreciate the joy of a long hike up a high hill.
  • To lessen the strain on your back while carrying a baby, consider adopting an ergonomic carrier. They come in numerous shapes and sizes from a variety of manufacturers, so look for one with straps instead of buckles for people with small hands!
  • For babies weighing between 12 and 25 pounds, these make it possible to carry them without putting too much strain on mommy’s body.
  • If you’re going shopping, running errands around town, or spending time together reading a book in a cozy spot like a library or coffee shop, this is the right outfit for you. The baby might be crying, and you’d like to have some additional hands to carry him or her around the house while you do the laundry.

What is the Best Position for a Baby to Sleep in a Car Seat?

First and foremost, babies should always be placed flat on their backs to sleep. The optimum position for sleeping is on your back, not on your stomach or in an upright position.

The risk of suffocation increases when babies are placed in a car seat on their stomachs. Babies younger than three months should not be placed on their backs in an upright position. They flop their heads forward since their necks aren’t strong enough in this position.

If you are with your kid and the car seat is in an upright position, there is no reason to be concerned. When you leave him to snooze while you go to the store or something similar, that’s when things get tricky.

As a result, if your kid is going to sleep in a car seat, make sure he is on his back.

How Long Should a Baby Sleep in a Car Seat?

Despite the lack of a standard for how long a baby should be left to nap in a car seat, it is not a good idea to leave them there for long periods of time. Experts, on the other hand, believe that letting a baby under the age of three months sleep in a bouncer, swing, or car seat for more than two hours is excessive.

Parents should also avoid putting their babies to sleep on a period.

Do Swings and Bouncers Help Babies Fall Asleep When Driving?

The best approach to put your child to sleep is on a level surface. Put your baby on his back in the back seat for a few minutes if you have to drive with him because he enjoys being in the car with you, but make sure you keep an eye on him. Both swings and bouncers are the same.

Car seat danger: Babies shouldn't sleep in car seats when not traveling

The user manual for the item you’re planning to use should also be studied carefully.

Can Babies Sleep in Car Seats on Long Rides?

It’s perfectly safe to take a long road trip with your infant in the back seat of your car. All you have to do is keep an eye out for him while you’re driving.

A second adult who can keep an eye on your child while you focus on the road is perfect for long travels. Take your infant out of the car seat every two hours if you’re traveling with just your baby. You’ll also be able to challenge yourself by doing this.

At What Age is a Baby Safe?

This can be answered in a single word: six months.

However, this does not rule out the possibility of harm to babies older than 6 months. Because they are still too young to be able to shift their sleeping postures on their own, newborns younger than six months are at greater danger. Even if your kid is older than six months, you should still keep an eye on him as he sleeps in the car seat.

11 Must Have Baby Travel Items to Help Baby Sleep on Vacation

1. Baby Travel Crib or Inflatable Toddler Travel Bed

Even while we advocate bringing as little as possible and renting baby gear when we travel, bringing your own baby travel cot or toddler travel bed has a number of advantages.

No need to worry about shifting around when traveling with a portable travel bed for newborns or toddlers. There is no need to worry about adjusting to a new setting when it comes to your bedtime routine. Practicing with your kid in the portable crib at home will help you have better luck with him sleeping when you’re away.

Using a hotel crib or even a travel crib for children may no longer be a viable option. There are a number of options for toddlers on the road, including inflatable beds and even travel tents like the KidCo PeaPod Plus toddler tent depicted above.

There are a number of toddler travel devices that are tiny enough to carry in your suitcase, and you can practice using them at home (we always start with good naps before using them at night).

2. Sleepsack

When our children were little, we always slept with them in sleepsacks (also known as wearable blankets). Bedtimes were easier because we didn’t have to bother about packing blankets. Even though our infant was sleeping in a hotel cot, the odors of home were still present.

When flying with a baby, we even brought our own sleepsack to use in the plane’s bassinet.

3. White Noise Machine

Playing white noise at home can help your infant or toddler sleep, so don’t forget to bring it with you when you travel. You can buy or download an app for your phone that creates white noise.

While staying in an Airbnb, we appreciated the convenience of having the app on a different device so that we didn’t have to leave our phones in our baby’s room overnight. The SoundBub white noise machine, which is also a Bluetooth speaker, is another favorite of ours.

Playing white noise at home can help your infant or toddler sleep, so don’t forget to bring it with you when you travel. You can buy or download an app for your phone that creates white noise.

While staying in an Airbnb, we appreciated the convenience of having the app on a different device so that we didn’t have to leave our phones in our baby’s room overnight. The SoundBub white noise machine, which is also a Bluetooth speaker, is another favorite of ours.

4. Portable Baby Monitor

A baby monitor is similar to a white noise machine, therefore we included it in our baby gear for travel. When we stayed at an Airbnb with our newborn, having a portable baby monitor was the most convenient way to keep an eye on her.

It’s simple to pack a tiny, lightweight baby monitor while going on a trip. Alternatively, if you’re traveling with numerous devices, you can utilize one of the finest baby monitor applications like Baby Monitor 3G.

5. Inflatable Bath Tub

It is possible to give your infant a bath while on the road if it is an important component of your child’s nighttime routine. It’s possible to give your infant a sponge bath in the hotel sink if they’re little enough. To avoid the risk of slipping, you can also take your infant into the shower with you.

If you have a baby, we recommend packing an inflatable tub.

6. Baby or Toddler Carrier

A baby carrier is the best way to get your kid to go asleep while you’re on the road. Traveling with a baby will be a lot easier if you have a good baby carrier. We always found it simpler to get our infant to fall asleep in a baby carrier than in a stroller when we were on the run. When flying with a young child, a baby carrier can be a lifesaver.

Toddlers should be carried in a toddler carrier, which is more comfortable for both the child and the caregiver.

7. Reclining Travel Stroller

It is much easier to travel with a baby or toddler in a nice travel stroller. You won’t have to worry about bringing your baby or toddler back to the hotel room for naps if they can nap in the stroller while you are out sightseeing.

Traveling with a flat-lying baby is easier with the best infant strollers. For some of the best toddler travel strollers, folding compactly or being low in weight are more important than other features (which makes sense since your toddler might be choosing to walk more and more).

8. CoziGo Bassinet and Stroller Cover

It’s much easier to get your kid to sleep while you’re out and about if you keep the environment dark and quiet. Using a CoziGo bassinet and stroller cover while traveling is a great way to let your baby get some shut-eye. When flying, the bassinet will fit perfectly over the seat.

In order to induce sleep in young children, the CoziGo stroller cover blocks out 97% of the light. It’s also a great way to keep your baby or toddler from becoming overstimulated by the surrounding environment.

9. SlumberPod Privacy Pod

With a child, you can’t always rely on a hotel with blackout blinds when traveling. A must-have baby travel gear, the SlumberPod privacy pod allows you to create a private sleeping space for your infant.

Even some toddler travel beds can be placed on top of the pack n’ play. As a result, your baby’s or toddler’s room will have a similar feel to the one they’re used to at home. With a SlumberPod blackout cover, your baby or toddler may sleep peacefully in a portable crib while you’re away from home.

When purchasing directly from SlumberPod, you may save $20 USD with the code BABYCANTRAVEL10!

The SlumberPod is available for purchase on Amazon, but for the best price, we suggest ordering directly from the manufacturer.

Can I get the SlumberPod in Canada?

As long as you use our discount code BABYCANTRAVEL10, you can purchase a SlumberPod directly from their site.

10. Inflatable Airplane Travel Bed

We routinely bring an inflatable travel bed for our children in order to get them to sleep during flights. As a result, our child has more room to run around and play as well as sleep. Long-haul flights are considerably more enjoyable for everyone if we don’t have to put our toddler to sleep on our lap.

As difficult as it might be to fly with a toddler, it’s absolutely worth trying anything to help them sleep better during the flight!

It's Absolutely Not Safe To Let Your Baby Sleep In A Car Seat — Here's Why

A bassinet can be requested for your baby if you’re flying with them. Instead, if your child prefers to sleep in their car seat, book a seat for your child and bring the car seat with you on board.

Check out these travel toys for babies and toddlers to keep them occupied while flying.

11. Favorite Stuffed Animal and Books

On vacation, it’s all about re-creating your baby’s nighttime routine and comfortable sleep environment as much as possible. A few inventive baby or toddler travel hacks may be necessary.

Bringing along a favorite blanket, stuffed animal, or book is a great idea if your child has a hard time falling asleep without them. Even when you’re on vacation, you should stick to the same nighttime routine.

The Bottom Line

It’s not a new phenomenon, but adequate attention is all that’s needed to keep babies asleep in car seats. This is especially important for newborns.

Keep in mind that babies under the age of six months are not yet capable of repositioning themselves in the event of an emergency.