There’s nothing worse than having to witness your baby fight for their life.
On April 4 this year, that was the unfortunate situation that fell upon Kirsti Clark, 28, and her husband Christopher Clark, 29.
Deciding to spend a day out with their daughters, three-year-old Malena and three-week-old Harper didn’t realize the trip would soon take a turn for the worst.
Due to rush-hour traffic, they had a long spin home, after they got home and lay Harper down on her play mat they instantly realized something was wrong.
Harper’s lips had turned blue, she was foaming at the mouth and her jaw was clenched shut.
Following the incident, Kirsti now has this warning for every parent.
The pair set out for an afternoon of shopping with their two daughters which would have been an ideal family outing for Kirsti and Christopher.
They set off home around 6.30 where the journey took 1 hour and 45 minutes, Harper was strapped into her car seat as usual.
After they got in, the newborn spent another 15 minutes in her car seat as the couple put Malena to bed.
Once they spotted the terrifying symptoms her parents immediately raced her to hospital.
Kirsti explains “When we got home it was way past Malena’s bedtime so brought Harper in her car seat and she stayed in there for 15 minutes as we got Malena into bed.”
“My husband got Harper out and put her on his knee but she looked like she couldn’t get comfy so he laid her down on her mat and she was kicking about.
“I told him her lips looked blue and then he pointed out how red her cheeks were.
He picked her up and I could tell straight away from his face that something was wrong,” she concludes.
Medics at the hospital were able to resuscitate Harper despite Kirsti’sfearing that she would lose her precious little girl.
Parents are warned that babies who spend more than an hour in a car seat are at risk of suffering from oxygen deprivation.
As a result of her oxygen levels plummeting Harper had suffered a seizure.
The sudden increase in oxygen caused her to fit when she had been laid on the floor.
Kirsti is now doing her best to warn other parents as she believes it to be a serious hidden danger:
“When the consultant told us it was the car seat I couldn’t believe it. I thought ‘there’s no way’. I couldn’t understand why nobody had ever told us.
“We had obviously heard about not keeping babies in car seats overnight because it causes curvature of the spine but not about anything like this.
“When my wee girl was a baby we did four-hour drives down to visit family in Cornwall and we had never had any problems at all.
“The doctors did tell us in the hospital that it is usually a concern with premature babies but Harper is a big girl. She was 8lb 5oz when she was born and she’s 8lb 9oz now.
“After we got my head around that being the reason, Christopher and I felt so angry at ourselves – we felt like we did this to our baby. It was horrendous.
“But we’ve spoken to so many people and they had never heard about it either and then some people have conflicting opinions on the time.
“That’s why we knew we had to share what happened to Harper because parents need to know. Just two hours in a car seat and we could have lost her, it’s terrifying.
“I would tell every parent to just really carefully watch their babies and if they don’t absolutely need to be in the car seat take them out because it is not worth what we had to go through.
“Watch your baby and know your baby. If something doesn’t seem quite right take them straight to the hospital.”
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