What is a ‘baby nurse’ anyway?
Many families are familiar with the concept of a night nurse or baby nurse. But what are baby nurses and why would someone want to hire one for their family? The term ‘baby nurse’ really is interesting, because the person acting in this role is not an RN/LPN (a nurse) or licensed in this capacity. Baby nurses are in no way clinicians. In fact, what they really are is Newborn Care Specialists. The baby nurse is someone that has knowledge in the area of newborn care and can be of great help to a family as they transition to life with a new baby in the home. Night/Baby nurses typically work at night and provide complete care for the infant including feeding, diapering, soothing, etc. -so that the family can sleep and recover from their delivery. However, this is becoming more of an outdated role in the 21st century. The title is actually being replaced with the term ‘Postpartum Doula’
What is the difference between a baby nurse and a postpartum doula?
So here’s the big question: What is the difference between a baby nurse and a postpartum doula? I am so glad you asked! Postpartum Doulas are ALSO Newborn Care Specialists. They, too, are not clinicians. What they are is experts in all things baby AND have a vast knowledge of the normal physiological healing of the birthing person -postnatally. They are well versed in what is normal mentally, as well, and can help you understand when to get help if you’re feeling more than the normal hormone influenced baby blues. At Michigan Family Doulas, your postpartum doula is also an Infant Feeding Specialist. What does this mean? This means that no matter how you decide to feed your baby, you have someone in your corner to help you trouble-shoot, to help you set goals and to help you find out what works best for you and your family. The beauty is-they do this all without judgement and without prejudice. We have a doula to fit every family!
A postpartum doula can help establish a safe bedtime routine, organize the nursery, help with feedings, and make sure you’re nourished and comfy in the first few days you’re home from the hospital. Plus, your postpartum doula can show you how to deal with common issues for your baby like colic, gas and excessive crying as well as learning the perfect swaddle- any one of which can stress out a first-time mom. Besides being a go-to source for education, reassurance and support, a postpartum doula can also help you set up healthy sleep habits for your baby. She can help you develop your own parenting style and weed out all the rest of the noise on the internet.
Baby nurses are not necessarily nurses!
The important point that we really want everyone to hear, is that baby nurses or night nurses are NOT nurses. They are not a better option, necessarily, for taking care of your family and your baby postnatally. They don’t have all the same education and they don’t have all the training that postpartum doulas or newborn car specialists do. It is Michigan Family Doulas’ opinion that if you want to ‘level up’ and get the absolute best in care for your growing family-it just makes good sense to hire the most experienced Newborn Care Specialist available. Michigan Family Doulas only matches you with the best of the best!