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Having a Baby in Korea - After Baby Arrives

Having a Baby in Korea - A...

The following information on caring for a newborn is based on the experiences of expat women who have had a least one child in Korea.

1) Post-natal care
Korean moms, who can afford it, spend a month or two in special post-natal care centers (aka maternity hotels) to recuperate. These centers replace the traditional care that was provided by the bride's mother after her first pregnancy. Here women learn how to care for their newborn - how to change diapers, feed/burp and bathe their baby, etc.

Foreign women can also spend time in these maternity hotels. With luck, there may be English-speaking staff.

2) Registering baby as a foreign resident in Korea
Parents must immediately apply for a passport for their newborn and bring proof of the application within 30 days of her/his birth to Immigration. Once the passport has been issue, they must return to the Immigration office to file the paperwork necessary to register the baby as a foreign resident. Baby does not have to be present. Note: Babies born in Korea of foreign nationals are not Korean citizens and must be registered as a foreign resident.

3) Breastfeeding
Although breastfeeding has not been very popular in Korea in recent year, that trend appears to be changing. Consequently, it is now easier to get breastfeeding information and assistance from medical staff.

An expat mother has found her Korean colleagues to be very supportive of breast feeding and the time she spent pumping, especially after she posted an article at work about how one year of breastfeeding can increase a child’s IQ by 5-7 points.

4) Circumcision
In Korea, circumcision has not traditionally been performed on newborns. Koreans tend to decide about circumcisions when the boy is around 9 or 10 years of age. The procedure is performed by a urologist. As of 2011, there appears to have been only one option for the circumcision of a newborn. There are now a few more (see the Circumcision of Newborns page) but the the baby must be between 3 days and one month. After that, one has to wait until the boy is older.

5) Getting around with baby- The sidewalks in Seoul and other cities around Korea can be difficult to transverse due to many cracks and uneven surfaces.
-  Carrying your baby onto the subway is possible but can be tiring. There are often lots of steps to navigate. Even there are elevators in most stations, you may still have to go up/down some steps. Some cars reserve one end for wheelchairs and strollers - no bench is installed there. You can recognise those sections by looking for a large wheelchair on the station platform near where you board the train. 
- Getting around by bus is feasable if you are carrying the baby. There are seats earmarked for the elderly, the disabled, the pregrant....and the baby carriers. Almost impossible to get on the bus with a stroller, however - even if it's folded due to the large numbers of people who travel by bus.

Blog for Moms:
Some expat women have created a blog for moms. To get on the blog contact list: expatmomsclub@gmail.com.

K4E Editor: We try to make the information on Korea4Expats.com as complete and accurate as possible, so if you notice any errors or omissions in the content above, please let us know at info@korea4expats.com.

Last Updated on 2021-02-08

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