Whenever people think of Dubai, they will think about a city in the United Arab Emirates which is associated with modern architecture, skyscrapers, luxurious shopping and a lively nightlife. Additionally, it is hot all year round in Dubai since it naturally has a hot desert climate. From what I hear even during winter is very much like a cool summer day in Canada and the northern USA.
Plenty of people definitely have Dubai on their traveling bucket list because it sounds so fascinating and beautiful. However, I have heard personally from people who have gone there that it is quite expensive and that is not at all surprising. Since Dubai sounds so lovely and luxurious on the outside, you have to wonder what life is like for those who live there.
You have to wonder what life is like for pregnant women and young moms who are living in Dubai whether they are natives or expats. After doing some research on the way pregnant women and young moms live in Dubai, it was fascinating to see that there are many differences from the way pregnant women and young moms live in North America- and in many other modern parts of the world.
Pregnant women in Dubai have certain strict rules to follow that is not at all applicable in North America. However, they also have some bonuses that many pregnant women in North America as well as in other first world countries know very little about. Let's go over 15 facts about being pregnant in Dubai.
15 Pregnancy Has To Happen At Least 9 Months After Marriage
It has already been established that babies born to unmarried mothers could end up being born in jail, the same applies to married pregnant mothers who have not been married for 9 months or longer according to DubaiFAQs.com- that is unless the baby is premature and therefore, that would not make the mother punishable. If it did then that would be incredibly cruel but fortunately, that is not what this is about.
The evidence would be that the parents had sex before they had even gotten married and that is a huge problem. I would not at all be surprised if a shotgun wedding happened right after the woman found out that she was pregnant. Because if mom got married in February and is due to give birth in July- then that would be a huge problem that is quite unthinkable for moms or those who want to become moms in Dubai.
14 Pregnant And Unmarried Might Be A Problem
If you are not married and pregnant in Dubai, then you will be in plenty of trouble. According to DubaiFAQs.com, pregnant women that are not married is causing an illegal act and as a result, they can potentially end up in jail. Sex without being legally married is not legal and this is why it is a problem Unmarried pregnant women will also end up delivering their babies in jail and will either immediately be deported or finish their sentence after the fact.
However, it is possible to be a single mother, divorced or widowed in UAE under certain circumstances. And being an unmarried mother is not illegal in the UAE as long as that all happened in another country. Therefore, it is possible for an unmarried mother to live in Dubai if the child was born elsewhere. Just being unmarried and pregnant is problematic, and if you want to live in Dubai and have a family, you must tie the knot first to avoid a jail sentence.
13 Married But Pregnant By Another Man Is Not A Problem
It is already known that it is illegal to be single and pregnant, but if you are pregnant but married to a man that is not the baby's father according to DubaiFAQs.com- that is not a problem. The only time that it would be an issue is if the man found out or knew about it but turned on his pregnant wife and reported it to the authorities. Therefore, the police will investigate the issue.
However, in situations where the woman was pregnant but living with a man who is not the baby's father who clearly does not know or accepts it is not problematic. Authorities in these situations would just assume that the man that the woman is living with is the father of the unborn baby. Why would they have a reason to think otherwise unless they were told. Let's hope for these women in Dubai that are in this situation are not discovered!
12 Private Hospitals Are Like Top Hotels
Here is one good thing to know when you are legally pregnant in Dubai. According to ExpatConnect.com, the private hospitals are comparable to 5-star hotels! In fact, maternity wards were described as quite luxurious. Apparently, there are water fountains and palm trees in private hospitals.
They even have flat-screen televisions, a mini-fridge, day-beds for the hubby and an all-day dining menu! Now if that is not the definition of Heaven then I don't know what is. The best I was able to do was get a semi-private room (which I know is a lot better than the alternative) after I had my daughter. But there were definitely no flat-screen televisions (I am not even sure if they existed at that time anyway), and no cool menus.
So as long as you are following the rules and you are properly insured in Dubai, the rewards sounds incredibly fantastic because you could potentially give birth in a very luxurious setting!
11 Mom's OBGYN Will Likely Be A Woman
When you are pregnant in Dubai, you can bet that your OBGYN will be a woman. It is a known fact that the UAE is a Muslim country, and according to ExpactConnect.com, this is why most gynecologists and OBGYNS in Dubai are women. Based on that culture in Dubai, women feel more comfortable around women and this is why it would be rare to find a male gynecologist in the UAE.
Even many women in Europe, Australia or North America would prefer to have a female OBGYN or gynecologist because it is an uncomfortable thought alone having a male doctor that is there to treat women-related health issues in addition to pregnancy. I personally never cared but I think I am in the minority as far as that goes.
Personally speaking, I have had both and I only cared about their bedside manner and how they were as doctors in general.
10 Doulas Are Popular
In Dubai, having a doula is a very popular option according to ExpatConnect.com. They are used more often for expat women that are away from their friends and family while they are pregnant and need emotional and physical support- which every pregnant woman needs regardless of location! According to the same site, it is said that most doulas are trained in the US as well as in the UK.
The doula will be there to support you as well as your spouse in any way possible, and from what I have noticed, doulas seems to be even more popular in other parts of the world. I never had one myself but I know many women who have and they were glad that they hired a doula to support them throughout their pregnancies. It probably makes a world of a difference to have one helping you out during a vulnerable time in your life.
9 Prone To Sunburn
When you are pregnant during the summer regardless of what stage of pregnancy, you are prone to being even more sunburnt than usual- and according to TimeOutDubai.com, the hottest times in Dubai are between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., and pregnant women are advised to stay indoors during those times. The UV index is super high during those times which we all know can be dangerous.
I personally have never been to Dubai but I can imagine how hot it is- especially during the summer. Another tip that was taken from TimeOutDubai.com was that pregnant women are advised to stay in air-conditioned settings since you are sweating that much more while you are pregnant.
I can personally believe that one because when I was pregnant with my daughter years ago in the middle of a Canadian winter- I had to take my winter coat off outside! Therefore, I cannot even imagine being pregnant in the summer at all, let alone being pregnant during the hottest time of the year in Dubai.
8 The Newborn Won't Be In The Nursery
According to ExpatConnect.com, babies will end up staying in the same room as the mom, not in the nursery because that is the way to encourage the mother/child bonding. Additionally, private hospitals also allow men to be present while their wives are giving birth.
In fact, that is very similar to how it is in Canada. When my daughter was born, she stayed in the same room as myself and did not end up in the nursery at all. The nursery was only to be used for babies that were born with some complications at birth so they could be monitored properly. Healthy babies otherwise were sent in the same room as the mom.
According to FitPregnancy.com, it appears that newborn nurseries are becoming a thing of the past as well in the USA. It is unknown if newborn nurseries were phased out first in Dubai before in North America. It is just known that as soon as the baby is born in a hospital in Dubai, the baby immediately stays in the same room as the mom.
7 Discouraged From Buying Ice Cream From Vendors
When you are pregnant you will be craving for all kinds of foods, or not! Depending on whether you are sick or not. However, ice cream is one food that so many people joke around about being a common pregnancy craving. According to TimeOutDubai.com, pregnant women in Dubai are advised not to buy ice cream from street vendors because there is a good chance that the ice cream is not made from clean water- which we all know could not only make you sick but could potentially be harmful to the baby.
It is also stated in that same source that while you are pregnant, you are more prone to catching nasty things, which means you likely will be violently sick from ingesting unclean water. In fact, this source even gives pregnant women a tip to make their own fruit juice and put it in the freezer in order to satisfy that craving and to cool down at the same time.
6 Babies Need An Arabic Birth Certificate (And It Costs Extra For English)
Mothers who are about to give birth in Dubai will have to realize that because Arabic is the language spoken in UAE, the baby will automatically end up with an Arabic birth certificate. According to DubaiFAQs.com, if the mother wants to have an English birth certificate or one in another language, it will end up costing extra.
Mothers who are not of the UAE nationality that are pregnant and living in Dubai need to be well aware of this fact, and be prepared that they will need to pay extra to have the birth certificates written up in English and to expect to deal with other paperwork that they may not be dealing with otherwise in other countries.
However, since the source of this fact tells pregnant women in Dubai everything they need to know about being pregnant and giving birth in UAE, this fact should not come up as a shock at all.
5 Breastfeeding Moms Will Never Be Alone
When you are pregnant in Dubai, you will know right away that according to ExpatConnect.com that breastfeeding support is widely available. There is not only plenty of breastfeeding support groups in the area but there is a La Leche league as well, as breastfeeding moms will never be alone. It is a known fact that breastfeeding is challenging and can be a huge struggle for moms, especially if they are new.
In fact, according to the same site that the malls in Dubai provide nursing rooms, among other settings in the city. The general attitude towards breastfeeding is very positive and the truth is that other regions of the world need to catch up with that since breastfeeding is very natural. Since it is a known fact that animals do it for their young, then there should never be an issue with it at all. Therefore the attitudes towards it should be the same as it is in Dubai.
4 Medical Insurance Is A Must
When you are pregnant in Dubai, you absolutely have to have medical insurance! It is essential because according to ExpatConnect.com, if you give birth without any medical insurance, it can cost you 6000 AED alone for prenatal care, and up to 25,000 AED for giving birth. That also depends on whether you have a natural birth or a C-section, and there are so many other factors that could influence the cost. Either way, lacking insurance is not a situation you want to be in at all.
In fact, in order to get maternity medical insurance, it is easier to get before you do end up falling pregnant. However, you can still apply for it while you are pregnant. The bottom line is if you are pregnant in Dubai, you have plenty of planning to do in order to save you some potential trouble that has a high chance of finding you along the way.
3 Babies Born In Dubai May Not Have UAE Nationality
Babies that are born in Dubai will not have the UAE nationally unless the baby's father is Emirati, according to DubaiFAQs.com. In fact, by default babies end up with the same nationality as the father. However, the baby may or may not end up with the same nationality as the mother. That all will depend on the laws of the country where she is from.
With that said, based on the information from DubaiFAQs.com, as soon as the birth of the baby- the baby's passport would have to be in the work. It is the parents' responsibility to get that organized. It is also said that it is never a good idea for parents to ever include their kids on their passports as it all must be done separately. Therefore, new parents in Dubai must be prepared to deal with even more paperwork than they had originally imagined. The process could take a few days to a few weeks to be done.
2 Expect Many Appointments And Scans
Being pregnant in Dubai means getting top-notch quality care and that is actually a very good thing- as long as you have the insurance for it which was previously discussed. According to ExpatConnect.com, if you are pregnant you will need to expect to have plenty of prenatal appointments as well as scans that happen every 2 weeks- even if your pregnancy is a low-risk one and that you don't have any kind of complications.
For instance, tests such as the glucose tolerance test are mandatory there even if you absolutely show no signs of having high blood sugar during your pregnancy. You would have to expect to go through tests that you may feel that are unnecessary and you will be seeing your OBGYN quite often in Dubai.
As annoying as it may seem considering being monitored so carefully my not even be necessary in your case- it is good to know that you are getting the best care possible regardless!
1 Doctors Have Long Wait Lists
The one thing that pregnant women in Dubai need to be aware of is those good doctors there have long waiting lists, according to ExpactConnect.com. Healthcare in Dubai is highly competitive and doctors can either be fully booked quickly and can be very hard to get an appointment.
In fact, one woman said on ExpactConnect.com that her first choice doctor would only be able to take in her when she was 3 weeks before her due date which we all know is not helpful. If you are going to get good prenatal care, you need to have a doctor well before that. For all, you know you could have a serious problem and be completely asymptomatic.
This particular woman said that it is quite common for women to start their pregnancy with one doctor under their care that is not their first choice and then go with their doctor of choice whenever he or she is available which could be much later on in the pregnancy.