Consider the effect of even a small amount of immaturity of the brain. Imagine how difficult life must be if you a school child and, in some ways, are still functioning at baby level.
The persistence of primitive infant reflexes is immaturity of the brain.
So what are reflexes for? They exist to keep us safe. Essentially, they are nervous system reactions caused by physical stimulation of the body’s receptors. These responses occur without conscious control. We need most of them throughout life for survival.
In contrast, the primitive baby reflexes, usually referred to as infant reflexes are only required to help the baby through the pregnancy, the birth process and early life. They:
- exercise the baby in utero.
- train the bladder and bowel to function automatically
- maintain the correct position of the foetus in utero
- help progress and turning during a vaginal birth
In a newborn, they:
- activate the first breath of life
- assist feeding.
- aid survival in very early childhood.
So, the infant reflexes are not needed in later childhood and adulthood and their persistence can show as immaturity of the brain and affect maturation in a multitude of ways.
The persistence of primitive infant reflexes creates a level of immaturity of the brain. So, it’s not surprising that a child with these reflexes persisting shows immature behaviours. Such as, resistance to self help activities, dressing, taking responsibility, play choices and more. Some children use “baby talk”, or show an over-dependence on adults and other behaviours inappropriate to their age. But learning can also be affected.
For example, attention and perseverance, or speed of processing may fail to develop. Schoolwork suffers and as learning becomes more difficult a child loses interest and self-esteem becomes eroded. If a child has many infant reflexes still persisting all aspects of their development can be affected, the many issues can affect their well-being. This can become more obvious as the child gets older and the gap widens. Often parents observe that their child “seems more immature the older she gets.”
Because the persistence of primitive infant reflexes creates a level of immaturity of the brain, the BrainChild program helps these reflexes integrate. So, the changes in maturation can emerge, until the child matches the maturity level of their peer group.