In March 2016, after a gruelling labour period that lasted 36 hours, Veronica Ni gave birth to her first child, Lauren. Soon thereafter, she experienced mastitis and blocked ducts—common postpartum issues that affect breastfeeding women. Seeking to resolve the extreme pain and discomfort, the first-time mum sought out doctors and lactation consultants all around our city-state, none of whom could help.
Frustrated, she decided to take a trip back to China to visit her friends and family. “I looked all over for a place in Singapore that could take away the pain, but there wasn’t any. I almost suffered from postnatal depression and thus I decided to take a break in Shanghai,” Ni shares.
It was there that she discovered Schöne Mama, China’s first postpartum recovery and health management agency. Founded in 2005, the luxury care provider has built a stellar reputation for itself with its quality postpartum treatments and services that help to alleviate postpartum discomfort.
Inspired by the care she received, Ni, a Singaporean PR, decided to partner with the brand to establish a centre here on our island, where she's based. “I saw a gap in Singapore’s postnatal recovery business and wanted to provide mothers the same help and experience I had received back in Shanghai,” she explains. “Schöne Mama Singapore helps mothers recuperate after birth using scientific technology and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) knowledge. We are a one-stop comprehensive pre and postnatal healthcare centre that focuses on providing health assessments, counselling, and guidance for women.”
The period after childbirth is incredibly complex and challenging, ranging from radical body changes to emotional highs and lows that are caused by hormonal shifts. Thus, it’s important to drive awareness as well as address the need for postpartum care, and, as Ni stresses, it should not end after the textbook four to six week period.
“Postpartum care does not end after your month-long confinement,” she says. “Postpartum care is a very big industry in China, and there are hospitals just dedicated to it, but here in Singapore, many people still think that the pains of childbirth end after the delivery, or the confinement period. While childbirth can be a very rewarding journey, it is also a highly taxing undertaking on the mother’s body.”