A baby's brain is only 20% developed at birth. In their first year of life, they execute pre-programmed reflex movements that mature their Central Nervous System. These Primitive reflexes create the wiring for the automatic part of the brain, so that the 'higher' brain is able to function with ease.
These reflexes develop in the womb and should be integrated by the time a baby is one year old. They are gradually replaced by the Postural reflexes which cope with the demands of a gravity-based environment. If the Primitive Reflexes remain, then the Postural Reflexes are prevented from full development. Retained Primitive Reflexes or under-developed Postural Reflexes can affect:
Lack of self-esteem
The Neuro-Developmental Programme
We undertake a full Neuro-developmental Assessment to see what reflexes are in place, this takes approximately one hour. From this, we then offer a Neuro-developmental programme of exercises, in order to mature the Central Nervous System.
"At last someone understands my child. I knew all along that he was intelligent but it just wasn’t showing in his results. Now we know why and there is something we can do about it."
Somerset Mother, Febrary 2020
Types of Primitive Reflexes
This reflex is stimulated once the baby is born, when it takes its first breath independently of its mother. It is an instant fight/flight reaction to stimulus. If it is still in existence it can affect many different areas: Sensory processing, anxiety/fear of change, poor impulse control, auditory confusion, difficulty making decisions, low self-esteem, hypersensitivity in all the senses and many more.
The palmar reflex is the automatic flexing of fingers to grab an object and should integrate by six months. If the palmar reflex is retained, a child may have difficulty with fine motor skills, stick out tongue while writing and exhibit messy handwriting.
Asymmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex (ATNR) - this reflex helps the baby move whilst in utero, and assists in the birth process. It differentiates the right side of the body from the left side of the body and facilitates early hand-eye coordination. If retained, it affects the ability of the eyes to track horizontally, affects balance, and is sometimes a factor in the mis-match between a child’s verbal ability and what they are able to write down.
Spinal Galant Reflex
It is believed that this reflex may act as a primitive conductor of sound in Utero, it appears to be connected to urinary and intestinal functioning. If it is still in existence it can affect concentration, auditory processing, bedwetting and leads to fidgetiness.
Tonic Labyrinthine Reflex (TLR) - this reflex helps to develop the flexor and extension muscle tone and is fundamental in developing head control. If retained it can lead to Vestibular difficulties (balance/coordination), and affect spatial skills, motion sickness and visual perception.
This reflex helps provide the baby with muscle tone required to push up on both and then one arm and to eventually sit unaided. If it is still in existence it can block later postural reflexes.
Please Note: The Neuro-developmental Programme is not a medical treatment but a developmental training programme.
Our experience shows that our clients have experienced improvements in social, emotional, behavioural or academic performance following our sensory therapies. However we do not claim to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease, medical condition or any other physical or mental disorder and always recommend that clients consult their medical practitioners as appropriate and do their own research before commencing any of our therapies.
Symmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex (STNR) - it is about differentiating the top half of the body from the bottom half of the body. It helps the infant to defy gravity and aligns the occipital and sacral regions. If retained, it affects upper and lower body integration (makes swimming difficult). It also affects posture, vertical eye tracking, muscle tone, strength, and concentration/attention.