Since his birth, your baby has reflexes that help him survive and adapt to his surroundings. As the baby matures, certain reflexes will disappear, others will change, and some will remain. The pediatrician will monitor their progress, but you can also stimulate those reflexes. Learn more about them!
A wide array of reflexes
Before breastfeeding, if you touch the baby's cheek, he will turn his head toward the stimulus while opening his mouth and searching for the breast.
This reflex appears before delivery and it allows the baby to latch on to the breast (or if breastfeeding is not possible, to the bottle's nipple).
Hold the baby below his shoulders and place him in an upright position with his feet touching the ground. It will seem that the baby wants to walk. Try this because this reflex tends to disappear after the second month.
Place a finger in the baby's palm and he will firmly grasp the finger automatically. Although this reflex tends to disappear within a week after birth, many babies will keep it for months.
This sense of survival disappears after two or three months and it helps confirm that the baby's joints move properly. To do so, release the baby from his back support very carefully, as if you were going to let him fall, and note how he stretches out his arms and waves them around.
When the baby hears a noise, he usually gets tense and stretches out his arms. This reflex will not disappear.
If you stroke the sole of the baby's foot upwards from the heel, he will turn his feet inwards while hyperextending the toes.
Asymmetrical tonic neck reflex:
If you lay your baby on his back, he is able to turn to one side, and as the head is turned, the arm and leg on that side will extend while the opposing limbs bend.