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Why is skin to skin contact important?

Our Head Midwife and Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) Dru Campbell discusses the benefits of skin to skin contact.


Skin to skin contact was originally recommended for premature babies to encourage growth and promote well-being.  Recent research, however, has indicated that all babies benefit from direct skin to skin contact.  Every well and healthy baby should have at least one hour of uninterrupted skin to skin contact with their mother at birth.  This is called the ‘golden hour’.  It is called this due to the importance of initiating breastfeeding within the first hour of life.

Many babies have a short rest after birth and then will search for the breast after around twenty minutes.  Skin to skin contact allows your baby to explore and find their way to the breast.


Many advantages of skin to skin contact exist, including:

  • Assists to regulate your baby’s heart and respiratory rate.
  • Keeps your baby warm and regulates his or her temperature.
  • Encourages your baby to breastfeed. UNICEF recognizes skin to skin contact as an important step towards successful breastfeeding.
  • Skin to skin contact often assists babies who have had some challenges with positioning and attachment at the breast.
  • You can continue skin to skin contact when you are at home with your new baby to optimize breastfeeding.
  • Assists with bonding with your baby.
  • Dad’s can do skin to skin too!
  • Skin to skin contact enables you to spend precious moments with your new baby when meeting him/her for the first time.
  • Even if you have chosen to artificially feed, your baby will benefit from this contact with you and your husband.


To ensure you are able to have the valuable and important time with your baby, document your requests in your birth preference list.  This is a set of wishes which can be communicated to the Midwife and/or Obstetrician who is supporting you throughout your labor and birth.  If possible, skin to skin contact should occur before your baby is weighed and measured and as soon as possible following an assisted birth.  Your midwife will be able to assist you to correctly position and attach your baby to the breast.  Skin to skin contact will encourage successful breastfeeding which is the cornerstone to optimal nutrition in the first six months of your baby’s life.



For further information about skin to skin contact and/or breastfeeding, please contact our Midwifery team. We run very popular Antenatal Classes whereby these topics are discussed in detail.  You can reach the Midwifery team by email: or via telephone: 04 348 7140.

NOW OPEN – Healthbay Holistic Centre

Healthbay Holistic Centre is Now Open

Our newest clinic, The HealthBay Holistic Centre, is now open on Al Wasl Road. Located adjacent to the main HealthBay Al Wasl clinic, the Holistic Centre currently offers Psychiatry services, a first for HealthBay, under the care of well respected and renowned  psychiatrist Dr. Amer Saadeddin.

In the coming months the clinic will add psychology, occupational therapy and speech therapy to its services. To book an appointment at HealthBay Holistic Centre or for more information call 04 341 3800.

Do I need Probiotics?

By Sara Abdelghany – Clinical Dietitian at HealthBay Al Wasl 

Probiotics – Essential in our diet

What is it?

Probiotics are the live GOOD bacteria that live in our stomach and are essential for the proper functioning of our digestive system. When our digestive system works properly we will digest, absorb, and metabolize food as needed. When the good bacteria in our gut (probiotic) are not found in the right balance, this system gets disrupted leading to indigestion, abdominal discomfort, weight gain or inability to lose weight.

How can I get enough probiotics?

Probiotics are naturally found in our bodies, but we can find them also in supplements and in some foods that require bacterial fermentation.

  • Yogurt is one of the most important sources of probiotic, but unfortunately, the pasteurization process of yogurt kills all the good and the bad bacteria including the pro-biotics. Try to choose Greek and organic yogurt or yogurt that is fortified with probiotics.
  • Soft and fermented cheeses like gouda and parmesan are also contained probiotics
  • Pickles are also another source of probiotics. Choose pickles that are brined in sea salt and water instead of vinegar as vinegar will not allow the good bacteria to grow.
  • Soybeans fermented in brown rice produce miso paste (a popular seasoning in Asian cuisine) is also another source of probiotics.

Make an appointment with Sara and find out more about probiotics and healthy nutrition, please call 04 348 7140.


What is Tennis Elbow?

By Dr. Gustavo Reque Rydberg, Medical Osteopathic Medicine & General Practitioner at HealthBay Orthopaedic and Physiotherapy Centre 

Tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis, is a common pain of the elbow that is often disregarded as a minor issue that will eventually resolve spontaneously.  A common misconception is that “tennis elbow” only affects those who play tennis. In fact, it can affect anyone, especially those who engage in new activities that imply carrying weights or are trying new exercise routines.  Carrying a young child, trying a new bicycle, boot camp exercises with kettle bells, etc… can all aggravate the common extensor tendons of the forearm to the point that they generate painful to wear and tear of the tendon attachment at the elbow.

Tennis elbow usually starts hurting as a result of “tendon overload” due to excessive tension on the tendon where it attaches to the bone. As a result, the attachment point becomes swollen and tender to touch. If untreated this small tendon can become so tender and damaged that it can dramatically reduce grip strength to the point that the affected person is unable to shake hands properly or carry objects comfortably.

Appropriate diagnosis and assessment are required to make certain that the tendon attachment swelling is treated properly but also the mechanical dysfunction that is, in essence, the real cause of the problem.  Some are surprised to discover that the tendon problem of the elbow is in fact due to weakness and instability of the shoulder!

Ultrasound assessment of the tendon will certainly provide relevant information in order to personalize the treatment plan. Normal tendon wear and tear, partial tears, full tears, calcific deposit, etc.,  all can be revealed with ultrasound and therefore modify the treatment plan.

Fortunately, if treated properly, tennis elbow responds well to therapies and does not have to stop us from enjoying our leisure activities.

Dr. Gustavo has over 15 years of experience in musculoskeletal and Sports Medicine. If you need an expert opinion about pain management in sports medicine, make an appointment by calling Orthopaedic and Physiotherapy Centre on 04 341 4608. 


Keeping your body & health in shape?

By Lama Al Khuja, Clinical Dietitian, HealthBay Al Wasl 

Eating properly is an important part of keeping your body fit. Maintaining good fitness requires careful attention to both diet and exercise. Nutritious food is no substitute for physical activity, but watching what you eat plays a vital role in developing a strong and healthy body. Combine a balanced diet with careful attention to good nutrition while exercising and you’ll ensure the food you eat is keeping you in great shape.

Start your day with breakfast

 Coffee is not a breakfast!

Make sure you have a healthy breakfast before you start your day.

– This simple tip will help you minimize munching and control your body weight.

It is also a good source of energy for an efficient working day.  

Eat a variety of colorful fruits and vegetablesHave 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day.

The vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants will maintain healthy body functions, optimize your metabolism and minimize your risk of disease.

Make half of your carbohydrate choices whole wheat

 The fiber provided by whole wheat foods play a role in controlling your hunger, improving your digestive system health and lowering your cholesterol levels.

Choose fish, lean meat cuts and low-fat dairy products

This will provide you with your protein needs without the extra calories from unhealthy saturated fat.

Limit your sugar, fried and fast food intake

These are empty calories which are harmful to your health and body. Instead, aim for healthy unsaturated fats from nuts and fish.

Snack smart

Keeping healthy snack choices on hand will control your hunger and decrease your cravings for unhealthy food and junk food!

Balance your intake and control your portions from food groups

Controlling your portions will allow you to eat everything yet keep your body and weight in shape.

Plan your meals and don’t skip meals

This will definitely help to curb cravings and prevent overeating at night. Frequent meals will also boost your metabolism.

Limit sodium intake

For healthier heart and better blood pressure control.

Drink plenty of water and fluids

Make sure you drink at least 8 glasses of water daily! Try to limit carbonated beverages and sweetened juices.

Limit alcohol intake

For a healthy heart and body weight, limit your alcoholic drinks. Ask your dietitian about what is considered a drink!

Be active often

The benefits are countless!  It will boost your metabolism, improve your mood and health and decrease your stress levels.

Read Food Labels

Reading food labels will allow you to make healthy choices!


Our expert Clinical Dietitian, Lama Alkhuja will customize a plan to fit your unique schedule.  She will also guide you on how to incorporate those changes in your lifestyle. To make an appointment, call 04 348 7140 or our Toll-Free number 800 4272. 




Perfect wrinkle reduction treatments

By Dermatology specialists at HealthBay, Al Thanya

Wrinkles are a normal part of the aging process that for many of us, we want to reduce and avoid.  Lifestyle factors such as smoking, drinking, poor diet and excessive sun exposure can all contribute to accelerating duller, older looking skin.

Here at HealthBay we offer a range of cosmetic treatments to help you look and feel rejuvenated.  Below are just two of the services we offer.

  1. Botulinum toxin is commonly used to temporarily inactivate the nerves  thus reduce muscle activity.  Due to this, wrinkles become smoother giving a youthful appearance lasting between three and four months before the effects start to wear off.

The common injectable areas are:

  • The frown lines between the eyebrows
  • The horizontal lines on the forehead
  • Lines around the eyes (crows feet)
  • Hyperhydrosis or excessive sweating under the arms and palms of hands – the results from this procedure can last up to one year

2. Dermal fillers help to reduce lines by restoring fullness and volume.  The procedure is especially popular as the patient has immediate results, very few risks and minimal recovery time.  They provide a natural look that can be adjusted to meet your needs.

The common areas for injecting dermal filler on the face are:

  • Lips
  • Wrinkles
  • None surgical nose, chin and cheek reshaping
  • enhance shallow contours such as nasal labial (line from nose to mouth)

All of our Dermal fillers are approved products from The Dubai health Authority and both procedures take approximately 20 minutes and only require numbing cream at the most (some patients don’t even require this).


To make an appointment with Dr. Thomas Berger, Dr. Suzana Roncaglia or Dr. Irena Gjoshevska, regarding any of our cosmetic treatments, please call 04 321 9393 at HealthBay Al Thanya. 





When things don’t go as planned…

Our Head Midwife and Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) Dru Campbell discusses the benefits of skin to skin contact.

By Jeannine Deitos, Clinical Psychologist at Holistic Centre, HealthBay 

Since we were born, people around us are telling us about what is right and what is wrong. They show us what would be the best path to follow and what’s to be expected each step of the way. Moreover, there is a certain ongoing pattern in those steps that gets passed through your family line, such patterns often go on generation after generation.

Then, according to this pattern, we plan everything: the age we are going to finish school when we would start and finish university when to get married and to have kids, and so on. Every single step well planned out. But what would happen if things don’t pan out the way we planned them? What if suddenly other things or events present themselves in front of us changing the rest of our journey?

How can you deal with such events? How can the family deal with those things? Are YOU ready to be flexible with yourself and to leave your comfort zone in order to change the pattern? Are you willing and to create a different journey for your future?

This is a very common topic that often gets explored during psychotherapy sessions. It is a wide subject that can deeply affect different areas of life, especially when it pertains change as it may lead through a journey of frustration and acceptance, requiring a new-found flexibility and self-awareness.

From the moment when things haven’t gone the way you planned them you need to take stock of the situation, accepting to look within in order to recognize this “deviation” as change and therefore to take this as an opportunity to grow. It is fundamental to understand that this shift can only happen when you accept to leave the comfort zone of your expectations.  It is also important to understand that this process is not a failure but it can propel you towards a “better version of yourself” , one that falls away from rigid family patterns and linear expectations.

Psychotherapy can assist this process by helping you to recognize these often-subconscious expectations as patterns and it can help you to take ownership of your journey going forward. Such unconscious patterns are deeply wired within. This process can, therefore, be truly painful because it requires a deep and brave self-evaluation and self-acceptance. The end of this journey, however, will see you reborn with a newfound self-knowledge of your values and their priorities.

This is a process of creation and transformation. This is how things can be transcended within taking you far beyond your initial expectations.  To change your subconscious patterns is to deal with the unknown and unexpected of life. What now? Are you ready to deal with your fears and frustrations and to try again?
Are you open to learning more about who you really are?

To question yourself can be the first step towards a big change in your life.  Don’t be afraid to transform yourself into a more real YOU!

To make an appointment with Jeannine Deitos, please contact Holistic Centre by calling 04 341 3800. 

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