Do I Really Need a Nursing Nightgown?

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Mothers who choose to breastfeed may not go back to wearing their pre-baby wardrobe for quite some time, even after they lose their baby bump. Breastfeeding involves giving your baby easy, frequent access to your breasts, and most normal clothes can make that difficult. Fortunately, there are nursing clothes for all occasions, from blouses and dresses to lingerie and nightgowns. 

You only need a nursing nightgown if you prefer dedicated nursing pyjamas for the night. If not, you can sleep in a nursing t-shirt and pyjama pants, or you can sleep in your regular pyjamas and take off your top for nighttime feeds.

When paired with a nursing bra, a nursing nightgown, or a nursing shirt makes it easier to breastfeed your baby without undressing. Keep reading to learn more about nursing nightgowns. I’ll also cover other options for nighttime nursing clothes so you can decide whether a nursing nightgown is right for you.

What Is a Nursing Nightgown?

A nursing nightgown is a nightgown that has easy access to your breasts for nursing. Nursing nightgowns are made from breathable materials and usually come with buttons or layered panels over the bust that can be lowered during nursing. 

Regular nightgowns have to be lifted, unbuttoned, pulled down at the neckline, or taken off entirely for breastfeeding. Nursing nightgowns allow your baby to access the breast without you needing to lift your shirt or stretch the neckline of your pajamas. All you need to do is unclip the cup of your nursing bra and pull down the panel on your nightgown. 

Then, you can help your baby latch onto the breast.

What Are the Benefits of Using a Nursing Nightgown?

The main benefit of using a nursing nightgown is that it makes nighttime breastfeeding easier for you and your baby, especially when you’re waking up at odd hours to feed him.

You’re probably going to be very tired during the first few months after your baby is born, and nursing nightgowns alleviate a little bit of that stress by giving your baby quick and easy access to the breast.

When you’re waking up to feed your baby every two to four hours, you don’t want to strip off your nightgown for every feed. A nursing nightgown saves you time by making it easy for you to breastfeed without having to undress.

If your nursing nightgown has a button-down front, you and your baby can enjoy more skin-to-skin contact during feeds. Skin-to-skin contact can help you and your baby feel more connected during this special time.

Nursing nightgowns are also helpful if you’re embarrassed about breastfeeding around the house. Most nursing clothes make it easy to nurse discreetly, without revealing your breasts to any onlookers. 

What Are the Drawbacks of Using a Nursing Nightgown?

Nursing nightgowns aren’t for everyone, and you may find that you’re more comfortable in your regular pajamas, even with the restricted access for breastfeeding. 

The main drawback of using a nursing nightgown is that it can be expensive. Nursing nightgowns aren’t strictly necessary for breastfeeding mums, and you can just as easily wear a nursing camisole and your existing pajama bottoms for late-night feedings.

If you choose to wear a nursing nightgown that has a button-down front, you may find that the buttons are difficult to manage when you’re sleep-deprived during a nighttime feed. When you’re holding your baby, you might prefer nursing pyjamas that you can manage with one hand. 

Are There Alternatives to Nursing Nightgowns?

There are some alternatives to nursing nightgowns, such as wearing your regular pyjamas with a nursing bra underneath and wearing your daytime nursing tops to bed. 

You will want to wear a nursing bra underneath your clothes, even overnight, as they provide support and help prevent milk leakage.

If you opt for pyjamas, it’s also possible to unbutton the front of your nightshirt, pull down the neckline of a stretchy nightgown, lift a loose nightshirt or dress, or take off your pyjama top entirely. 

The less expensive option is to wear the nursing tops you wear during the day to bed. Nursing camisoles, tank tops, and shirts can all be worn overnight as well. If you’re building a wardrobe of nursing clothes, consider adding tops that are fashionable enough to wear during the day and comfortable enough to sleep in. 

If you don’t care to wear nightgowns and prefer other forms of pyjamas, several clothing lines make nursing pyjama sets. However, these can be expensive.

Do I Need a Nursing Nightgown?

You will need a nursing nightgown if you don’t have any bedtime clothes that provide easy access for breastfeeding. If you do have nursing clothes you can wear to bed, such as nursing camisoles or button down pyjama tops, then you don’t necessarily need a separate nursing nightgown.

With a nursing nightgown, you’ll be comfortable at night, and it will be easy to nurse your baby overnight. However, if you’re someone who doesn’t like wearing a nightgown to bed or are looking to cut down on expenses, you can do without one. 

Instead, you can take off your pyjama top to nurse. You can also make do with sleeping in daytime nursing tops or lifting your pajama top for feeds. It may not be the most stylish choice, but it’s better for your budget.