First time I heard the term night nurse was when I was working in corporate and my executive I supported had one after each of her three kids. She called it something different but now I understand it was the same. When my first year collective client mentioned that they were going to have one it sparked my interest and knew I wanted to share the benefits of having a night nurse or postpartum doula. So I asked Taylor with Mama Bear Newborn Care to share some of the benefits with me. This is what she shared with me.
Postpartum doulas and night nurses are being utilized more often every year. It has gone from something rarely talked about to the new up and coming thing you need as a postpartum mom. Back when families would help each other through birth and postpartum, night nursing wasn’t seen as much because everyone’s “village” was their Aunts, Moms, Grandmothers, etc. But in evolving times while couples spread their wings and move away from family, they’ve realized they still need that “village”. As they navigate the new journey they’ve embarked on, sometimes they prefer it not to be family for conflict of “this is how it should be done” or “this is how I did it with you, your sibling, so on and so forth”. Families really enjoy having the professional education and evidence behind the milestones of their baby.
Having help postpartum benefits families in so many ways. Each postpartum doula brings something different to the table but we all help in so many ways. Having a postpartum doula can help decrease the risk of postpartum depression and anxiety; having a professional in your home at night to care for you and your baby gives families the comfort of knowing their baby is safe and cared for. We have a wealth of knowledge about babies milestones, nutrition, and sleep. As a night nurse, we are here to educate you. We want to help you gain confidence in yourself as a new parent and knowing your baby’s needs.
One of the biggest benefits of having a night time doula would be the extra rest you get as a new parent. Whether parents plan to exclusively breastfeed or bottle, we give them optimal rest. Moms don’t have to do the “extra” work that comes along with night feeds, such as, changing baby, burping, or holding baby upright for 20 minutes to help prevent reflux. If parents plan to bottle feed while we’re there then they may just get a full night sleep, with a newborn! While the baby sleeps in a safe sleep space, the doula will do any baby related chores. Wash bottles, pump parts, baby laundry, tidy the nursery, prep bottles for the next day and anything that will make the next day easier for the family. Some doulas meal prep, make mom breakfast, set them up with snacks and water throughout the nursing sessions at night. We restock all of the diapers, wipes, and take out the baby trash. These little extra things seem like such a mountain for parents when they’re already faced with a plate full.
The duration of our stay really depends on the family’s needs. We usually do contracts anywhere from 4-12 weeks but they always have the option to extend. I usually say start with 4-8 weeks to see how the baby is progressing and then we can always add on. Some families just want some extra help here and there so we try to get them the rest they need when they’re feeling a bit burnt out.
I hope this information was helpful and know it’s ok to ask for help after just had a baby. Motherhood is hard and society put so many unrealistic expectations on us. I am thankful that people like Taylor and Staci can help mamas both from an education standpoint but also with the emotions that runs wild in your body after having a baby.
Taylor, owner/founder of Mama Bear Newborn Care on the left. Staci, postpartum doula on the right.
Anna Wisjo Photography is a Charlotte newborn photographer specializing in simple luxury maternity, newborn, and baby portraits for the modern family. We serve families throughout the greater Charlotte area including Ballantyne, Cornelius, Davidson, Denver, and Huntersville. Our studio is located in Denver, NC.
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