By Amber Barrett

Part 1 of 3 of our Postpartum Provider series.

Wait. A baby nurse? Actually, the term “baby nurse” while still used quite frequently, is not the best term to use. Why not? For one, it can be confusing as you may assume with this term you will have a licensed nurse caring for your little one. Secondly, there are a number of options for someone who wants to work with newborns…did you know there are 3 different types that we staff here at Annie’s Nannies? For those reasons, we use an all-encompassing term to help group anyone that works with newborns; we call them “postpartum providers.”

So if I can’t hire a baby nurse, who can I hire? That’s a great question!   At ANI you can hire a night nanny, postpartum doula, or newborn care specialist.  Let’s go over the different types:

A Night Nanny has lots of experience with newborns, has worked for many families caring for newborns overnight, and while they may not have any specific newborn care training, are highly experienced and worth considering. A night nanny has only one focus-baby care. Fun fact: some have come to us that do have medical backgrounds but love the night nanny work!

A Postpartum Doula (PPD) is a certified professional with training as a doula. Their main goals are to support the mother and the family in their new role; they may help with breastfeeding, offering some household help during day shifts including laundry, meal prep, and errands. At night, your PPD is focused on helping you maximize sleep while ensuring they are helping you meet your goals. Fun fact: your PPD is there for non-judgmental support, evidence-based education, and supporting both partners in their new role as parents.

A Newborn Care Specialist (NCS) has taken a course or multiple courses and has a certificate as a NCS. Their main goal is to not only provide education and offer evidence-based information, but their main focus while in your home is your newborn. Most work overnights and help parents maximize sleep. Fun fact: Your NCS can help teach healthy sleep hygiene; just ask!

Whether you hire a night nanny, a postpartum doula, or a newborn care specialist, know that you will be able to maximize your sleep while still bonding with your baby!

**Its important to note that many new moms worry that if they hire night help, their provider will take the baby all night and not let mom nurse; this is definitely not true. Helping a new mom establish a breastfeeding relationship with a new baby is of utmost importance to providers; the great part about having night help is that instead of having to get out of bed (especially when still healing after birth), your provider brings baby to you, as well as water, snacks, and whatever else you need. And…once baby is done, you can roll over and get right back to sleep so you have energy the next day, while your provider handles burps, diaper changes, and helps soothe baby back to sleep.