This article will share baby-related Korean vocabulary, from the stages of pregnancy to the early years of the baby, including some medical terms Korean celebrated events for a baby. Whether you are a current or aspiring parent, a child’s relative, or just a person who loves babies, this article will be your go-to guide for talking about babies in Korean.
Without a doubt, pregnancy brings joy to mothers and fathers around the world. Of course, for some women it comes along with difficulties and even dangers. The experience of pregnancy can be divided into stages, called trimesters. So, let’s dive in from the stage of the first trimester.
Korean people from ancient times to the present have believed that a baby in the mother’s womb should have a name different from its given name after being born. This name is locally known as 태명 [taemyeong]. Some even believe that the uglier the name is, the more the baby will strive to be healthy and survive.
And when somebody dreams a sign of pregnancy, such as a dream about a remarkably huge fruit or an animal, especially a dragon, this is considered to be a 태몽 [taemong]. Sometimes this dream comes to the parents or close relatives of the couple having a baby.Also, the conversation made to a baby in a mother’s womb is called 태교 [taegyo]. Whether it is reading a book or turning on some music, or simply saying hi, it is called taegyo.
|임신||Imshin||Pregnancy / pregnant|
|유방 압통||Yoobang aptong||Breast tenderness|
|기분 변화||Giboon byeonhwa||Mood swings|
|머리 두통||Meori dootong||Headache|
* I am pregnant. = 나는 임신이다. [naneun imshinida].
* Parking space for pregnant women =임산부 주차 자리 [imsanboo joocha jari]
A visit to the Doctor
Your doctor will definitely congratulate you with the words “축하합니다 [chookhahamnida]” (congratulations).
The doctor will also inform you about the conditions of your pregnancy.
|태아 검사||Tae-a geumsa||Prenatal check up|
|산부인과 의사||Sanboo-inkwa euysa||Obstetrician|
|마지막 월경 일||Majimak woljeong il||Last menstruation date|
|출산 예정 일||Choolsan yejeong il||Expected due date|
|세 쌍둥이||Se sangdoong-i||Triplets|
Precautions to take
There are of course precautions or 주의 사항 [jooyi sahang] to take all throughout a pregnancy.
|___(을/를)피해 하세요||____(eul/reul) pihae haseyo.||Avoid _________.|
|과도한 활동||Gwadohan hwaldong||Extraneous activities|
|계단을 오르 내리기||Gyedaneul oreu naerigi||Climbing up and down the stairs.|
|하이힐||High heel||High heels|
|수은 함량이 높은 식품||Soo-eun hamryang-i nopeun shikpoom||Foods with high mercury content|
|의사의 조언없이 약을 복용||Euysayi jo-eon opshi yageul bogyong.||Taking medicine without the doctors advise.|
*을/를 are suffixes used in these expressions. 을[eul] is used when the word ends with a consonant and 를[reul] when the word ends with a vowel.
Second trimester maternal changes
|허리 아프다||Heori apeuda||Backaches|
|민감한 잇몸||Min-gamhan immom||Sensitive gums|
|코 막히다||Ko makhida||Nasal Congestion|
|발목과 발이 약간 부어 있음||Balmokgwa bari yakan boo-eo iseum||Mild swelling of ankles and feet.|
|식감이 아주 좋아||Sikgami ajoo jowa||Increase in appetite|
|살찌다||Sal dzida||Weight gain|
|임신성 당뇨병||Imshinseong dangnyobyeong||Gestational diabetes test|
* Stillbirth is called 사산[sasan] while abortion is 낙태 [naktae].
Third Trimester maternal changes
|아래 배 통증||Arae bae tongjeung||Abdominal pains|
|약한 진통||Yakhan jintong||Braxton hicks|
|배 주름||Bae jooreum||Stretch marks|
|깜빡 깜빡하다||Kamppak kamppakhada||forgetfulness|
|연속적인 진통||Yeonsokjeog-in jintong||Consecutive contractions|
|자연부||Jayeonboo||Normal birth delivery|
|제왕 절개||Jewang jeolgae||Cesarean section delivery|
Expected Delivery Date
As the days pass by, although there is an expected date announced by your doctor, surprises are also likely. Expecting families must know what to prepare for, both before and after the baby is born.
Postpartum care guidance is considered as a standard service provided by doctors to new mothers.
Most hospitals are affiliated with 산후조리원[sanhoochooriwon] also known as Postpartum care facilities which are usually located right next to the hospitals while private clinics offer to provide these services directly.
But since the fees involved in these services are quite high, many new mothers choose to stay with their biological families during the recuperating period or in some cases, the mother-in-law comes over to help the new mom take good care of the newborn baby.
|조기 출산||Jogi choolsan||Early childbirth|
|양수 터지다||Yangsoo teojida||water breaking|
|유도 분만||Yoodo boonman||Induced labor|
|긴급 제왕절개||Kingeup jewangjeolgi||Emergency CS delivery|
|휘복 중||Hwebok joong||recovering|
|산호 추리||Sanhoo choori||Postpartum care|
Baby’s growth stages and characteristics
|이빨 난다||Ippal nanda||Teething|
|포동 포동||Podong podong||Chubby|
|고집 세다||Gojib seda||Stubborn|
|무럭 무럭 잘 자란다||Mooreokmooreok jaranda||Growing well|
Korean people have a unique belief that as soon as the baby is born, its age turns to be one year old. The time the baby was inside the mother's womb is considered as a year of age.
That is why someone might say, “I am 10 years old in Korean age, but 9 years old in international age.”
세 [se] means Korean age and 만 [man] means international age, so the above sentence should be:
나는 10세, 만 9살 [naneun ship se, man ahop sal].
And Korean ages add a year every New Year, no matter what month your birth date is in. So if a baby was born in December of a year, as soon as January starts, the baby turns two years old, despite the fact that the baby is only a few weeks old.
Illnesses and Medications
As babies grow, no matter how careful we are, there are still some unavoidable cases of mild or extreme illnesses. These are some of the common terms a parent or guardian might encounter.
Some medicines can be bought over the counter, as the pharmacy has certified pharmacists who can give professional advice in terms of mild cases.But they will inform you if your case needs a doctor’s prescription as they cannot issue or sell certain medicines without it.
|가루 약||Karoo yak||Powdered medicine|
Hospital departments and clinics
Doctor is 의사 [euysa] but we address them as 의사 선생님 [euysa seonsaeng nim] while nurse is 간호사 [ganhosa] and we address them as 간호사 님 [ganhosa nim].
|아동 병원||Adong byeongwon||Children’s Hospital|
|정형 외과||Jeonghyeong wi-gwa||Orthopedics|
|응급 실||Eung-geup shil||Emergency room|
|한의 원||Han-euy won||Oriental Meds clinic|
|이비인후 과||i-bi-inho-gwa||EN&T clinic|
Phrases commonly said about a baby
|엄마 많이 닮았다!||Eoma mani talmata!||She resembles her mom!|
|아빠 붕어빵이네!||Appa boong-eo pang ine!||He looks totally like his dad!|
|너무 귀여워!||Neomoo kwiyeowo!||So cute!|
|애 쌍꺼풀 봐라!||Ae ssangkeopool bwara!||Look at the double eyelids!|
|깨물고 싶다!||Kaemoolgoshipta!||So adorable, I wanna bite!|
|보조개도 있다||Bojogedo itta!||Even have dimples, too!|
|너무 잘생겼다!||Neomoo jalsaengyeota!||So handsome!|
|안아줘도 돼요?||Anajwodo dweyo?||Can I hold (him / her)?|
|천사 같이!||Cheonsa kachi!||Oh, like an angel!|
*As most Korean people have single eyelids, many people seeks the help of aesthetic surgeons to enhance their looks by creating double eyelids. So when a baby is born with natural double eyelids, they cannot help but notice and praise it.
|까꿍!||Kakoong!||Peek a boo!|
|잘 자라라!||Jal jarara!||Be a good (boy/girl)!|
|예쁘게 커라!||Yepeuge keora!||Grow up gracefully!|
|엄마 아빠 말 잘 들어,알았지?||Eoma, appa mal jal deureo, arachi?||Listen to your mom and dad, okay?|
|잠이 와?||Jami wa?||Are you sleepy?|
|배고파?||baegopa?||Are you hungry?|
|물 놀이 할까?||Mool nori halka?||Shall we play splish, splash?|
|기저귀 깔아 줘?||Kijeogi kara jwo?||Shall we change your diaper?|
|울지마, 울지마..||Wooljima, wooljima..||Hush, hush...don’t cry...|
|착하지?||chakhaji?||Aren’t you a good (boy/girl)?|
|가만 있어||Kaman iseo||Stay still|
|뛰지마||Twijima||Don’t run around|
|하지마||Hajima||Don’t do it!|
|소리 치지마||Sori chijima||Don’t shout.|
|춤춰 봐||Choomchwo ba||Can you dance?|
|이리 와 봐||Iriwa ba||Come over here|
|내 말 들어 봐||Nae mal deureo ba||Listen to me.|
|장난 치지마||Jangnan chijima||Stop playing around|
|전 기저귀||Jeon kijeogi||Cloth diaper|
|일 회 용 기저귀||il-hwe yong kijeogi||Disposable diaper|
|아기 이불||Agi ibool||Blanket|
|속 싸개||Soksagae||Swaddling wrap|
|턱 받이||Teok baji||Bib|
|모자||Moja||Cap / hat|
|머리 띠||Meori ti||Headband|
|머리 핀||Meori pin||Hairpin|
|돌 반지||Dol banji||First birthday ring|
Foods and formula
|쌀가루 이유식||Ssal karoo iyooshik||Rice cereal|
|아기 간식||Agi kanshik||Baby snacks|
Carriers and Entertainers
|포대기||Podaegi||Sling cloth carrier|
|아기 침대||Agi chimdae||Crib|
|카 시트||Ka-siteu||Car seat|
|쪽쪽이||dzokdzog-i||Dummy / pacifier|
|동화 책||Donghwa chaek||Story books|
|아기 용||Agi yong||For babies|
|아기 용품||Agi yongpoom||Baby products|
|아기 의자||Agi euyja||High chair|
|영유아 건강 검진||Yeongyoo-a geung-gang geumjin||Child’s medical test|
|유아 돌보미||Yoo-a dolbomi||Baby care taker|
Games and playground
|숨바꼭질||Sombakukjil||Hide and seek|
|술래 찾기||Soolae chak-ki||Tag game|
|블록 쌓기||Beullok sak-ki||Stack blocks|
|박수 치고||Baksoo chigo||Clap your hands.|
|날 잡아 봐라..!||Nal jaba bwara…!||Catch me!|
|50 일||Oship il||50 days|
|100 일||Baek il||100 days|
|첫 돌 잔치||Cheot dol janchi||First birthday party|
*Korean people celebrate the 100th day since the birth of a baby. It has been a tradition since ancient times when babies often did not survive one hundred days due to poverty and poor medical assistance.
Although Korean lifestyle has improved tremendously since then, it is celebrated as a way to express gratefulness that the baby is alive and healthy.
Other resources you could check out:
Baby-related words are a vast topic, and I am hoping we were able to discuss the parts you were expecting from this article.
If there is anything I didn’t cover, please ask away. I would be more than happy to provide a response to your inquiries. And if you want to practice your pronunciation, you can use the phrases to talk with kids or babies around you.
And don’t forget to share on your Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram or by email to your friends and family. Thank you.