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Newborn Reflexes.

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Presentation on theme: "Newborn Reflexes."— Presentation transcript:

1 Newborn Reflexes

2 What is a newborn reflex?
Newborn reflexes are reflex actions originating in the central nervous system (brain) that are exhibited by normal infants, in response to particular stimuli These reflexes disappear or are inhibited by the frontal lobes as a child moves through normal child development Because reflexes originate in the central nervous system, doctors are able to track the progression of a newborn’s nervous system by watching the progression of their reflexes Most reflexes generally disappear before the 3rd and 4th months, but can last as long as a year Also called primitive, infantile, or infant reflexes

3 Rooting Reflex When you stroke your baby's cheek he/she will turn towards you, usually looking for food. You may also notice this occurs when the baby accidentally brushes his/her own face with her hands Very useful when learning to breastfeed your baby Can sometimes be a source of frustration if your baby flails her arms during feedings Simply using a blanket to pin her arms closer to her body during feeding may help

4 Palmer Grasp When you touch the palm of your baby's hand, the fingers will curl around and cling to your finger or an object Good reflex to take advantage of with other children, to allow the baby to "hold" their hand This reflex also makes it difficult to obtain handprints until it disappears at about 6 months

5 Plantar Reflex Occurs when you stroke the sole of your baby's foot, his toes will spread open and the foot will turn slightly inward This reflex is fun to watch Disappears by the end of the first year

6 Babinski Reflex Often confused with the Plantar Reflex, the Babinski reflex is also present at birth and fades around the first year. This reflex appears when the side of the foot is stroked, causing the toes to fan out and the hallux to extend. Caused by a lack of myelination in the corticospinal tract in young children A sign of neurological abnormality in adults

7 Moro Reflex When you fail to support or hold the neck and head, the arms of your baby will thrust outward and then seem to embrace them selves as their fingers curl This reflex disappears at about 2 months of age Also known as the “startle reflex”

8 Walking Reflex If you take your baby and place his feet on a flat surface he will "walk" by placing one foot in front of the other This isn't really walking and will disappear by about 4 months of age

9 Withdrawal Reflex An attempt to avoid pain
Babies receive a whole slew of tests as newborns and, if you will notice when the heel of the foot is pricked for a blood test, the leg and foot will jerk backwards and the opposite leg and foot push forward

10 Sucking Reflex Ensures that the baby will nurse on a breast or bottle to be fed and occurs when something is placed in the baby's mouth Sucking is made possible by the thorax when the infant breathes in and by fixing the jaw between breaths Swallowing and breathing must be coordinated, and the depth and rate of breathing are handled differently when the baby is engaged in nutritive and non-nutritive (such as on fingers or a pacifier) sucking Slowly replaced by voluntary sucking around 2 months of age

11 Why are reflexes important?
They offer a protection Each one ensures a different need for survival Examples: The rooting reflex ensures the baby can find and get food The palmer and Babinski reflexes are a kind of insurance against falling

12 Reflexes lead to learned behavior
All newborn reflexes become a base for learned, complex behavior later on Examples: The walking reflex sets the stage for future learned behavior of walking and standing When parents or the pediatrician or nurse hold newborns to a standing position, their faces will often brighten and they appear to be attempting to participate. This, in turn, delights and rewards the adult, setting up feedback for future learning.

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