The first few weeks of your infant’s life are exhausting. You’re sleep deprived, trying to learn what your baby needs, and you’re probably being weighed down by requests by friends and relatives who want to visit and see the new baby. But what are you going to do? If you’re a working parent, these few weeks may be the only time you get to be home with your new baby before they’re left with a nanny, at daycare, or with a relative. You’ll want to treasure these days, but can you really enjoy them when you’re so tired?
Overwhelmed by the demands of an infant, some families choose to hire an infant nanny or newborn care specialist to assist them during these times. A far cry from a daycare program, newborn care specialists have a unique set of skills that can help you tackle those sleepless nights and enjoy your time with your baby more.
Know The Difference: Daycare Or Infant Nanny
Daycare programs provide the bulk of the childcare for very young children today, and there are a lot of benefits to sending children to daycare. In particular, daycare centers offer children a high level of engagement and interaction, a chance to socialize with other children, and many integrate pre-school skills into their daily curriculum for older children. It can be hard to find a great daycare, but when you find the right fit for your family, the daycare center becomes an extension of your family.
A nanny, on the other hand, provides children with more one-on-one interaction and allows them to remain at home, and there are obvious benefits to this as well. Working with a nanny also tends to be more flexible since you can hire based on your schedule, which can be helpful if you work unusual hours. This applies to a typical nanny, though, not a specialized infant nanny. Though an infant nanny will also offer the same flexible, specialized care, they tend to emphasize certain childcare tasks.
Do You Need A Newborn Care Specialist?
So how can you tell if you need a newborn care specialist or infant nanny to help you during those early months? One of the main factors is how comfortable you feel with basic infant care tasks. These infant care specialists can provide a lot of guidance when it comes to establishing a family routine, can offer support with breastfeeding, and may also be able to help provide soothing solutions for infants with reflux or colic. Even more specialized night nannies can handle nighttime wakeups to allow you to sleep through the night and later assist with sleep training.
Infant nannies typically remain with the family from birth through age six months, and many are former RNs or LPNs, meaning they’re ready for any childcare challenge they may face. And while they’re described as nannies, in many ways, infant care specialists are intimates within the household, assisting mothers with healing after birth, and helping to keep everything running. It’s not about the baby as much as it’s about what mom needs.
Some families are more comfortable knowing there’s an expert on hand after their baby is born, but others prefer that those early days be more private and prefer not to have visitors or assistants. Only you can decide what’s right for your family. Like any other childcare professional, infant nurses aim to support your family so that you can feel comfortable, bond with your child, and find your rhythm as a new parent. You should feel encouraged to accept the support you need to thrive.