Everything You Need to Know About a Night Nurse

When I did a questionnaire a few days ago I was blown away by how many questions I received on a night nurse. Everything from “what are they,” to “What do they cost”. I was going to do an Instastory to answer all of your questions but newborn snuggles won over. Instead of Instastories, I hope this blog post will suffice. Here is a list of every question I received and your guide to Everything You Need to Know About a Night Nurse:


  1. What is a Night Nurse? What do they do?
    • I stole this defnintion from google: “A night nurse or baby nurse is an expert in newborn care who helps new parents during the first few weeks of life at home. Also called “newborn care specialists,” they typically work at night, feeding and changing the baby so Mom and Dad can get some much-needed rest.”
      With Eleanor I learned SO much from my night nurse. I would have been completely lost without her. She weighted Eleanor every week so we knew exactly how much she needed to eat. She also came up with a “wake” and “sleep” time schedule for me. She was a wealth of information and calmed my first time mom anxieties. The big advantage of a night nurse, minus the sleep, is that they also help sleep train your baby so by 10-12 weeks your baby is sleeping 12 hours a night.
  2. How long do they stay?
    • This is totally dependent on you. I always book mine for 12 weeks, however, I have read some people only book them for the first two weeks so they can rest and recover. My main goal for my night nurse is to help sleep train my baby to sleep through the night, so I need them to stay longer. But like I said, you should have full control over how long you want yours to stay.
  3. Can you use one if you breastfeed?
    • Absolutely! All of my friends breastfeed and they all use a night nurse. The nurse will bring your baby to you in bed and ready to eat. Once the baby is done they take the baby, change the diapers, re-swaddle and put the baby down. So you are able to feed your baby without having to fully “wake-up”.
  4. How much do they cost?
    • This is 100% dependent on each individual nurse and where you live. I would say on average a night nurse is between $25-$30 an hour. However, based on where you live you might find one for $20 or one that charges $35, but all of the ones I have found in Dallas were $25-$30.
  5. How many nights do they come?
    • This depends on what you prefer. I have friends that do 7 nights a week and have heard of people only doing 1 or 2 nights a week. I have our current nurse 4 nights a week with the opportunity to increase or decrease when I need to. Since I formula feed I like to do 4/5 nights so that I can get rest to deal with my toddler the next day, but I still get a few nights to be with and feed my baby at night.
  6. What hours do they work?
    • Again, this is totally dependent on what you or your night nurse prefers. Our original plan was to do 6:30pm – 6:30am so she could take the baby while I fed and bathed Eleanor. However, the one benefit of Covid is that Brice is working from home so he doesn’t have a commute home from work and is able to help a little more. Because of this we switched her to 8:30p.m. – 6:30a.m. with the opportunity to change. If you can’t tell, my current night nurse is VERY flexible, which I love. She can come at 5:30pm one night so me and my husband can go out to eat (which we aren’t doing in this current climate) or she can come later. It is whatever I need (find a night nurse like this). 8:30p.m. is great for us right now because Eloise is eating at 9p.m., so the nurse has time to arrive, chat, settle-in and then feed.
  7. How do you find one?
    • All of mine have been word of mouth from friends who have used them in the past. This is the absolute best way to find one. Just ask around. Any mom you meet, ask! Do not be shy! I have even heard of women asking the nurses at the hospital and finding excellent recommendations from them. However, I know word of mouth isn’t always possible (especially if you just moved to a new town) so I recommend googling services who provide night nurses. Going through a service can be more expensive but they do the background checks, etc. for you so you have peace of mind. I also think reaching out to children’s boutiques, your doctor, or other child services might lead you to a “word of mouth” score.
  8. Do you tell them what to do or do they run the show?
    • You should ALWAYS run the show when it comes to your child. ALWAYS. My first night nurse had a different approach than my current nurse but it was what I needed at the time. I needed someone to come in and tell me everything I needed to do or was doing wrong. For Eloise, I didn’t need that as much. However, I have never felt like I couldn’t tell my night nurse what I wanted and what my expectations were. I recommend interviewing each night nurse, ask a million questions, set your expectations, and go off who you feel most comfortable with. You will have a very innate sense of protectiveness over your newborn so whoever you hire, should put you at ease. If they add stress or anxiety, you don’t have the right nurse!
  9. What questions should I ask my night nurse during the interview?
    • Because my night nurses had worked with so many of my friends my interviews were sweet and simple. My main question was, “Do you sleep train?” However, if you are interviewing a nurse that has not worked with anyone you know I found this article to be a great resource of questions. I personally don’t think any question is off the table when you are interviewing someone to watch your newborn. Whatever answer you need to make yourself feel comfortable, ASK!
  10. How are you handling your night nurse during Covid?
    • I received this a lot. A few moms even said they cancelled their nurse out of fear. I spoke with mine and asked how careful she was being and her concern level. We both felt comfortable with the levels of pre-cautions we are taking and decided to move forward. Like anyone you let into your house, you can ask them to wear a mask and take their temperature before entering. However, like I said above, if having your nurse around is going to add stress, DO NOT HAVE HER COME. I am SUCH an advocate to find ways to cut as much stress out of your life as possible!

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