Tag Archive | "breast feeding"

Preparing for birth in a public hospital in Hong Kong

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Preparing for birth in a public hospital in Hong Kong

Posted on 21 August 2013 by hulda

PREPARING FOR BIRTH IN A PUBLIC HOSPITAL IN HONG KONGBy Hulda Thorey –  Published in SassyMama – 20 September 2013

In Hong Kong, every person with a Hong Kong ID card has the right to use the government hospital maternity services at a minimal cost. The maternal health clinics generally provide adequate services, staff, equipment, and resources to ensure your safety. The facilities are up to standard and the delivery rooms are big and very well equipped. It can be a great experience to give birth in a public hospital but we highly recommend parents educate themselves so they know the politics, preferences and the procedures within each hospital.

Before using the services at a public hospital you will need a referral letter to confirm your pregnancy, so the first step is to visit a doctor or obstetrician to get that letter. The antenatal checkups at the public hospitals are free of charge and they will let you know how often you need checkups, roughly every month initially, then every two weeks. The checkups can take a bit of time, so allow at least 3 hours, but if you are lucky it will take less time. Many of our clients supplement the public system with a private midwife or doctor, which saves time and gives them a chance to get answers to their questions.

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Annerley Midwives’ Best Tips For Mothers-To-Be!

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Annerley Midwives’ Best Tips For Mothers-To-Be!

Posted on 27 May 2013 by hulda

Best Tips For Mothers-To-Be!

  • IMG_8870Be an active participant in your own pregnancy and birth. Respond to signals you get as you know your body best, not the doctor or the midwife.
  • Do a tour of the maternity ward where you wish to give birth. Ask what your options are regarding your partner, positions for birth, pain relief etc. Listen to the response and prepare accordingly.
  • Attend antenatal classes for preparation for the childbirth. Whether you are  aiming for a natural birth, or planning a C-section consider doing extra classes that cover these areas.
  • When breastfeeding your baby, expect it to take between 4 – 6 weeks for it to feel established.
  • Remember that every pregnancy is different, advice from friends and relatives is kindly meant, but often doesn’t apply in your case!
  • Pregnancy is a time to start preparing for a baby – get used to multitasking, cat-napping and unplanned events.
  • The expert in the labour room is you.
  • Your baby does not have to rule your life, but it will change it. Find ways to adjust and enjoy the change, rather than control it all.
  • newbornThe more often you breastfeed your baby, the more milk you will have. You cannot save up milk by feeding less often.
  • After birth, it takes about 6 weeks for the body to achieve much of its healing. Even after that, understand that it will still take time before you feel totally healed.
  • A normal healthy baby will cry to express its feelings. Use the first days to learn to know what different types of cry mean.
  • An unsettled baby will often relax when lying on its front. Even though this is not a recommended position for sleep, it is fine to try this to settle the baby, and while you are around the baby.
  • A bath is an excellent way to soothe a baby. Fill the tub well and make sure the water and the room are nice and warm. A hungry baby will cry in the bathtub, so a small feed beforehand is a good idea.
  • Big breasts or small breasts, it makes no difference when it comes to making milk.
  • Bad habits are defined by you, not your mother or a book.
  • Enjoy the moment and worry about tomorrow tomorrow. Perhaps your worries just died during the nighttime.
  • Eat protein rich, high fibre and iron rich food in the first days after birth. Drink at least three litres of water and take vitamin C supplements.Two women friends chatting over coffee at home
  • Sex after childbirth might feel a bit different but you are safe to have intercourse anytime after four weeks, or when you both are ready. You might need KY gel because of hormones involved in lactation can leave things a little dry.
  • Pain is usually there for a reason. If you can’t identify that reason, get help.
  • As soon as you are able after the birth, make sure you leave the flat at least once a day. Take a walk or meet a friend – just change your environment a little.

On line education, support and consultation available. Wide range of services in our clinic for Hong Kong residents.

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The Best 10 Breastfeeding Tips from our Lactation Experts

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The Best 10 Breastfeeding Tips from our Lactation Experts

Posted on 11 April 2013 by hulda

Breastfeeding is supposed to be natural – and it is – but sometimes nature needs a little support. Annerley’s midwives give their best recommendations:

  1. BreastfeedingFeed as often as the baby wants in the first few days.  This means sometimes every 30 minutes, sometimes 3-4 hours between.
  2. Get all the assistance in hospital you can to learn the right techniques from the beginning.  Ensure you also have help from a midwife when you come home.
  3. A good latch on the breast is one of the most important factors in preventing sore nipples and to increase the flow of the milk in each suck. 
  4. Pain that does not go away during a feed means something is not OK.  You need to respond to this quickly or get help to identify what is wrong.
  5. Always make sure you bring the baby to you, and not to bring the breast to the baby. 
  6. In the early days, air dry the nipples, let breast milk dry on them and if they are cracked, lanolin may be helpful in the healing process.
  7. If your milk supply is low, make sure to drink and eat enough, get plenty of rest and eat as often as possible.
  8. Fenugreek might also help if you have low milk supply.
  9. Feed on demand in the early days, it will help to regulate the flow of milk faster and decrease risks of low supply and mastitis. 
  10. Use hot and cold packs if/when your breasts engorge, and learn techniques to massage blockages out.  


When in doubt and ideally before any problems happen,  feel free to call me or any of the other midwives at Annerley, we are all experts in breastfeeding amongst other things and will help you either at our clinic, or in your home in the early days.  

Best regards,  Hulda Thorey, midwife.


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Thank you Emma and Olivia!

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Thank you Emma and Olivia!

Posted on 29 March 2012 by hulda

Emma Saunders, who recently gave birth to Olivia, had this to say about her experience with Annerley:

“After hearing such positive feedback about Hulda and the team at Annerley I had no hesitation in booking my package when finding out I was pregnant. The antenatal classes with Fiona were perfect in preparing us for the birth of our baby. It also gave us an opportunity to meet other parents, who in fact have become great friends.

When Olivia was born I had a tricky time with breastfeeding.  The first stages of motherhood were quite daunting and the visits from Fiona and then Hulda were an amazing support. The help and advice were incredible and I can really say it is what got me through the first few months. It really is such a great comfort to know there is someone there to reassure and guide you. I felt much calmer when Hulda arrived and so did Olivia! Watching her with Olivia was very special and I learnt so much. It really is like you’re sitting with a member of your family and how amazing to have that when your family are so far away.

Thank you so much for everything; I don’t know what we would have done without you and the whole team at Annerley.  What is so special is that you always feel there is somewhere to go to and even at 3 months I am still reassured to know that Hulda and her team are only a phone call away. I will continue to enjoy the expertise and courses that Annerley have to offer now and in the future.  I recommend Annerley to all new parents. I promise you, you won’t be disappointed but just ecstatic that you have found the best support network in HK to see you through your pregnancy, birth and first stages of motherhood!”

Emma Saunders, 2012

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Hulda Midwife at Annerley

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What is “normal” in breastfeeding?

Posted on 11 February 2012 by hulda

Hulda Midwife at AnnerleyDear all,

I have spent this week with women battling their breastfeeding challenges.  Mostly good news, but many interesting topics came up and a lot of women asked; what is “normal” in breastfeeding?

This topic reminds me a little bit of when woman are pregnant and they keep coming into Annerley after their checkups, half with concerns that their baby is suddenly too small and the other half with babies that in the last scan seemed to be alarmingly big.  Now this is another story for another blog, but in terms of the breastfeeding mums, pretty much half of them feel that they don’t have enough milk, and the other half is producing so much that they don’t know what to do to slow it down.

I am not writing a lengthy blog about this today, but I just wanted to raise a few points.

  1. First of all, not all babies grow the same.  There is no particular advantage of being  “average” or above the 50th percentile.  Even if your baby is bigger or smaller, as long as it grows, this is fine.
  2. Second, the breast milk production changes over time, over days and between the hours of the day.  It is also greatly affected by your sleep, food and drink intake, stress levels, outings, guests, travels, illness etc.  So there will be swings.  And similarly, baby’s need for milk changes through the day, between days and as it grows.

The great thing is that the two usually sync beautifully, if you just stay calm and let things happen.  After a few weeks of breastfeeding, there is harmony in this for most women but in the meantime, it is sometimes hard to stay patient, or even to believe that the day will come when everything is in balance.  But it makes no sense that there would not be enough milk for some babies, if everything is done “correctly” (why I put this this way is because correct can be many different ways).

Also, hard core breastfeeding support is sometimes a bit too hardcore.  Those that work in this field are always very optimistic and telling women to be patient, everyone can breastfeed etc.  But sometimes we fail to acknowledge that there are women out there that for one reason or another who will always have a harder time breastfeeding than others.  They can still breastfeed, but it must be admitted and they must not be made to feel bad when it is obvious that they do in fact only have just about the amount that the baby needs, or if they are the ones that always have a massive overflow of milk. Breast augmentation creates a perky lift appearance if you fear low hanging or sagging breasts due to pregnancy or weight loss.

I will continue with this later.  But if you are a mother that produces more milk than makes you feel comfortable, or less milk than it seems that the baby wants,  be comforted by the fact that you are first of all not alone, this happens to many women but also, with time things always settle and you will find a pattern to feed your baby that suits both of you best.

As for my involvement, I must just say that I admire all of you ladies out there, you really make me feel proud of the strength that I see within you all. 

Feel free to share your experiences and breastfeeding stories here or on our Facebook page, we love to hear from you.


Too book consultation with our consultants (midwives and/or lactation consultants), click here or email us to info@annerley.com.hk

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Mastitis – blocked milk ducts

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Mastitis – blocked milk ducts

Posted on 12 January 2012 by Annerley

… I just wanted to write these words as a reminder to all breastfeeding mothers because I am now sitting here at home trying to rest and recover after a blocked milk duct that I failed to diagnose myself with in time!  I have literally spent the last few weeks warning all the mothers that I am seeing to be careful during the cold months and over Christmas when people tend to get more busy than usual – that this is a typical time for women to get mastitis, as they forget to check and sometimes the feeding schedules are a bit different from usual.

And here I am, after rather busy days since December,  – one homebirth and another very lovely birth at Union Hospital, – and lots of home visits, I somehow have managed to ignore the fact that my own feeding schedules are all over the place.  And I am really supposed to know about these things. In any case, I am just about finished with unblocking it by feeding much more frequently and resting in bed for more or less two days.  It is painful and saps all my energy but worth doing and now I feel much better.

So I guess one should never fail to check, feel and listen to the body.  Any changes in the usual daily patterns, more or less feeding, pumping, activities etc. may all lead to troubles if you are not careful.  I just wanted to share this – and finally say that as long as you do catch it in time, it is well worth fixing it by taking it slowly with the baby for a few days – it has been lovely here at home with my little ones.

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