Breast milk is best for your baby

Breast milk is best for babies. The World Health Organisation (WHO) and Health Promotion Board (HPB) recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life. Unnecessary introduction of bottle feeding or other food and drinks will have a negative impact on breastfeeding. At around six months of age (but not before 4 months), infants should receive nutritionally adequate and age-appropriate complementary foods while breastfeeding continues for up to two years of age or beyond. Consult your doctor before deciding to use infant formula or if you have difficulty breastfeeding.

Abbott Singapore fully recognises breast milk’s primacy, value and superiority and supports exclusive breastfeeding as recommended by the WHO.

The content on this website is intended as general information for Singaporean residents only and should not be used as a substitute for medical care and advice from your healthcare practitioner. The HPB recommends that infants start on age-appropriate complementary foods at around 6 months, whilst continuing breastfeeding for up to 2 years or beyond to meet their evolving nutritional requirements. If no longer breastfeeding, toddlers can switch to full cream milk after 12 months. This should be complemented by a good variety of solid foods from the four main food groups (fruits, vegetables, grains, meat and alternatives). For more information on the nutritional requirements of infants and young children, please visit


Preparing for Pregnancy

Labor And Delivery – Get Ready…Get Set…

Week 36 - labor.jpg

Preparing your body, your mind, and your partner for what’s about to happen

Monitoring your contractions during labor. It can be difficult to know if you are showing signs of true labor or if they are simply Braxton Hicks contractions (also known as false labor). But you can monitor your contractions to know for certain.In the beginning, contractions might be about 10 minutes apart. Time them from the start of one contraction to the start of the next, and be aware if they grow stronger, longer, and closer together.If you have not reached 37 weeks and you are having more painful, frequent, rhythmic contractions, contact your healthcare provider, as this could be a sign of preterm labor.
Your baby's body prepares for childbirth in notable ways:
  • A hormone surge, which might play a role in initiating labor, and could also help maintain her blood pressure and blood sugar levels after birth .
  • Your baby's head drops into your pelvis; this is called lightening or engagement.
The three stages of labor and delivery
Stage I: Early labor, active labor, and transitionEarly labor can last six to 12 hours, and your cervix will open (dilate) to 4 cm.  Active labor can last four to eight hours, and your cervix will dilate from 4 cm to 6 cm.  During transition, your contractions will strengthen and get closer together, and your cervix will dilated to 10 cm, signaling that your body is ready for the second stage of labor. Stage II: Birth  This stage can take an average of three hours. Your body is ready to push the baby out. Most babies are born head-first. Shoulders, arms, and legs follow, making birthing the shortest part of labor.  Stage III: Delivery of the placenta  This stage usually lasting anywhere from five to 20 minutes, as your uterus continues to contract to push out the placenta (afterbirth).
Managing pain during childbirth

Some of the most widely used pain-management options include:

  • Relaxation
  • Breathing
  • A warm shower
  • Walking during labor
  • Analgesics
  • An epidural
  • Other pain medications administered by your healthcare team
Baby delivery methods

As part of your final prenatal visits, you and your doctor will determine the delivery method that's best for you and your baby. Methods include:

  • Vaginal delivery — The most common method of delivery; first births last about 12 to 14 hours
  • Scheduled cesarean birth (C-section) — Based on your medical history, your health, and your baby's size and health, your doctor might schedule you for a cesarean birth
  • Emergency cesarean birth — Under certain circumstances, your doctor might recommend a cesarean delivery if vaginal delivery is not progressing or if there is a safety concern for the mom or her baby
  • VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean) — Some women who previously had a cesarean delivery might be able to deliver babies vaginally in later pregnancies
Your recovery after childbirth

After your baby is born, you both will continue to be monitored by your healthcare team. Most women who deliver vaginally spend one to two days recuperating in the hospital. Women who deliver by cesarean normally spend three to four days recovering in the hospital. In either case, your hospital stay likely will include:

  • Ongoing monitoring of your and your baby's health
  • Assistance, tips, and advice from the healthcare team on your baby's care
For the partner in childbirth

This day will be a memory both of you will share for a lifetime. Here are some things to keep in mind when delivery day arrives:

  • Be encouraging. She could feel vulnerable during childbirth, and might need your reassurance that she is doing a good job — especially when labor is at its peak.
  • Be humble. You have no idea what she is experiencing; do not attempt to lessen the pain of delivery by understating her discomfort.
  • Be patient. She might yell and scream at you or say things that hurt your feelings, so take it in stride and try to focus your energy in a positive way.
  • Be supportive. She might poke fun at herself during delivery if she feels awkward. Tell her she looks beautiful and you are proud of her. Encourage her.
  • Be respectful. If you choose to document the delivery, remember that you will watch this moment again. Choose your words — and what to record — carefully.
  • Be comfortable. You might have to stay overnight, so bring pajamas, a change of clothes, toiletries, personal care products, and books or magazines. Make a list of family and friends’ phone numbers and email addresses so you can share the good news.


Family Campaign


healthy confinement recipe 1:
Braised chicken in ginger wolfberry milk

Credit: Gleneagles Singapore and Chef Catan Tan, Gleneagles Hospital Singapore

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