Examples of Retained Primitive Reflex

Examples Of The Most Common Retained Primitive Reflexes

Whilst each of the primitive reflexes (listed below) has their own technical name – a simple description is given so that the parent might identify such a reflex in their child.

A Tight Uncomfortable Pencil Grip

Knuckles are white from holding onto the pen for dear life. It is
impossible to have any kind of speed in note taking. The tripod fingers (thumb and first 2 fingers) are unable to separate from the fourth and fifth fingers resulting in unusual and awkward pencil grips. When the child turns their head, the arm towards which the head is turned feels like it wants to “shoot out”.

Poor Sitting Posture On A Chair

Head is too close to the desk, arms flex and extend, there is a loss of “writing position” and eyes focus in the distance. Difficulty holding the head and body upright against gravity causes a posture that finds it almost impossible to sit upright or still in a chair. Child seems to “wrap” him/herself all over the chair or “balance” on the chair at odds angles and positions.

A Ticklish Restless Child With Discomfort Around His/her Waist

Is always hitching up their pants. Has a hip rotation to one side whilst walking

An Immature Hand Grip

The whole body is “on alert”

has a slow clenching response when the pencil touches the palm interfering with a refined finger grip. Can also be tongue movements when concentrating on hand activities.

Over reaction to stimulation eg sight, sounds, movement, being bumped or touched. The whole body is “on alert” causing over watchfulness, tentativeness, withdrawal or the “best form of survival is attack”

Running Into Objects

The whole body follows the head turn and vice versa – the body rolls “like a log”.

What Can Be Done About These ‘fixing’ These Primitive Reflexes ?

A special pack is available for $50 from the KL3 centre.

This pack contains the exercises for both floor and water environments as well as other resources for use by the parent in the home environment. Consistency and routine are important but making the exercises fun is the key ingredient. Progress will vary with each child and is dependent on the severity of the retained reflex(es).

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