NEURO DEVELOPMENTAL DELAY (NDD)
IMMATURE PENCIL GRIP?
We all are born with a set of primitive reflexes (sometimes known as survival reflexes).
If these primitive reflexes are not fully integrated (which means no longer active as the brain takes over) during infancy then the control of voluntary, skilled and complex movements can be affected. This is known as Neuro Developmental Delay (NDD) or immaturity of the Central Nervous System.
The slideshow below will give you a better overview and explanation of these reflexes.
REFLEXES ARE DEVELOPED IN THE WOMB
Primitive reflexes are the building blocks of life. They develop while the baby is still in the womb and control a baby’s movements in the first year of life. They are very important in building the foundation for the development of motor, sensory, and cognitive skills.
REFLEXES AT THE TIME OF BIRTH
The baby's natural reflexes help during the birthing process. At the same time, a difficult delivery may result in the baby retaining certain primitive reflexes.
REFLEXES HELP THE BIRTHING PROCESS
They are involuntary movements that serve to protect the fetus, help in the birthing process, and aid in survival during the first six months to one year of life. These reflexes move the baby from automatic motor activity (in which the infant is helpless in controlling the movements) to controlled, skillful movements such as rolling over, sitting up, crawling, and eventually walking.
SPINAL GALANT REFLEX
The Spinal Galant Reflex helps movement in utero and at birth. It should be integrated by 3 to 9 months after birth.
ASYMMETRICAL TONIC NECK REFLEX
The Asymmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex (ATNR) helps in the development of the muscle tone, assists in the birth process and ensures free airway when lying. It also facilitates early hand-eye training.
The palmar reflex is in the group of grasp reflexes. It is connected to early feeding.
TONIC LABYRINTHINE REFLEX (TLR)
The TLR is the primitive response to gravity and helps to develop flexing and extending.
NEWBORN BABY ROOTING & SUCK REFLEXES
A baby is born with the Rooting & Suck Reflexes - they help it survive during the first months of life.
SYMMETRICAL TONIC NECK REFLEX (STNR)
This reflex is present in normal development from 5 to 11 months of post-natal life and is a precursor to crawling.
This reflex emerges only 4-6 months after birth and should remain present for life. It helps to break up the effects of the TLR and ATNR to facilitate independent use of either side of the lower half of the body.
INTEGRATING THE REFLEXES
By the first birthday, the primitive reflexes should no longer be necessary as the brain takes over their function. The term for this is that the reflexes should be integrated.
REFLEXES IN TODDLERHOOD
As the infant adjusts to its new environment after birth, early movements are critical in building the foundation for more complex movements, skills, and behaviors.
Postural reflexes need to be properly developed. Without these reflexes, complex skills that we now take for granted, such as skipping or riding a bike, would be difficult or slow to develop.
Primitive reflexes are present in the womb and last for about one year, depending on the reflex. At this time the reflex ‘integrates’ or incorporates into the higher-learning levels of the brain. Movement is the key that integrates the reflexes into more advanced and sophisticated skills as a child grows. If a primitive reflex does not integrate, this reflex is then considered 'retained' or ‘present’ past the typical developmental stage.
In this pyramid you see how we develop our functions. This development happens from the Central Nervous System up.
If any of the stages of this development is not happening as required, or is completely missed, then the next level up leading to academic learning will be impacted.
This is why the integration of all the reflexes and synchronized development of the entire sensory system is crucial not just for academic skills but for life in general.
As we can see in the pyramid, vision plays a huge part in the development of the sensory system. This is why we at Orthovision pay particular attention to the relationship between vision and other sensory systems.
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