2 Objectives • Explain the infant reflexes and their importance. • Pinpoint and explain the number of infant reflexes.• Describe the primitive reflexes.• Describe the postural reflexes.
3 What are Infant Reflexes? A reflex is an involuntary muscle reaction to a certain type of stimulation.Occur subcortically (below the level of the higher brain centers)Newborns’ reflexes to evaluate neurological function and development
5 Infant vs. Lifespan Reflexes Most “infant” reflexes do not last beyond the first year.Infant reflexes may not completely disappear.May be inhibited by maturing CNS.May be integrated into new movements.Reflexes that are called “lifespan” reflexes.
6 Role of the Reflexes in Survival Human infants essentially helpless.Highly dependent on their caretakers and reflexes for protection and survival.Primitive reflexes occur during gestation or at birth and most are repressed by 6 months of age.Primitive reflexes are important for protection, nutrition, and survival.
7 Role of Reflexes in Developing Future Movement Postural reflexes are related to the development of later voluntary movement.Reflexes integrated, modified, and incorporated into more complex patterns to form voluntary movements.
8 Role of Reflexes in Developing Future Movement Infant ReflexFuture Voluntary MovementPalmar graspGraspingSteppingWalking
9 Reflexes as Diagnostic Tools ConcernMoro reflexMay signify cerebral birth injury if lacking or asymmetric.symmetric tonic reflexMay indicate cerebral palsy or other neurological problem if persists past normal time.
10 Examples of Primitive Reflexes Palmar GraspSuckingRootingMoroStartleSymmetric Tonic NeckPlantar GraspBabinski
12 Sucking Stimulus / Response S: touch of lips R: sucking action Disappearance3 months postpartumConcernsNo reflex problematic for nutrition
13 Rooting Stimulus / Response S: touching the cheek R: head moves toward stimuliDisappearance4 to 6 months postpartumConcernsNo reflex problematic for nutritionNo reflex or lack of persistence may be sign of CNS.
14 Moro Stimulus / Response S: Suddenly but gently lower baby’s head R: Arms and legs extendDisappearance3-6 months postpartumConcernsMay signify CNS dysfunctionMay indicate injury to one side of brain
16 Startle Stimulus / Response S: sudden loud noise R: Arms and legs flex Disappearance4 months
17 Tonic Neck Stimulus / Response S: turn head to one side R: Limbs flex on one side, extend on other sideDisappearance3- 4 monthsConcernsFacilitates bilateral body awarenessFacilitates hand-eye coordination
18 Plantar Grasp Stimulus / Response S: Touching the ball of foot R: Toes graspDisappearance3-4 monthOtherMust disappear before the baby can stand or walk.
19 Babinski Stimulus / Response S: Stroking outer sole of upward R: toes to hyper extendedDuration12 months
20 Postural Reflexes Stepping Crawling Swimming Head and Body Righting Pull Up
21 Stepping Stimulus / Response S: Infant upright with feet touching surface R: Legs lift and descendDisappearance1 – 2 mothsOtherSometimes called walking reflexDevelopmental changes in reflex over time
22 Crawling Stimulus / Response S: place on abdomen R: Legs and arms move in crawling actionDuration2 months
23 Pull Up Stimulus / Response S: Sitting/standing, hold hands, tip in one direction R: Arms flex or extend in to maintain upright positionDuration3 months – 1 year
24 Eyes reflexBlinking or corneal reflex Infant blinks at sudden appearance of a bright light or at approach of an object toward cornea, persists throughout lifePapillary: Pupil constricts when a bright light shines toward it, persists throughout the life.Dolls eye: As head is moved slowly to right or left, eyes lag behind and do not immediately adjust to new position of head, disappears as fixation develops, if persists, indicate neurological damage.
25 Nose:Sneeze: spontaneous response of nasal passages to irritation or obstruction persists throughout life.Glabellar: tapping briskly on glabella (bridge of nose) causes eyes to close tightly
26 Mouth & throat:Gag: stimulation of posterior pharynx by food, suction, or passage of a tube causes eyes to close tightly.
27 Mouth & throatYawn: spontaneous response to decreased oxygen by increasing amount of inspired air persists throughout life.Cough: irritation of mucous membranes of larynx or tracheobronchial tree causes coughing persists throughout life, usually present after first day of birth.