Retained Primary/Primitive Reflexes

Primary Reflexes develop at certain times from conception up until a few months after birth. They are essential to a new-born’s survival and on-going development in the first few weeks of life, and are the basis of all involuntary responses, like gripping. Gradually these automatic movements develop or ‘integrate’ into more voluntary movements. This occurs by age two.

There are instances when integration doesn’t occur and the response of the primitive reflex remains (called retained). As the reflexes emerge along a time-line, if integration of one reflex doesn’t occur, it impacts the development of those that follow it, which in turn impacts many areas of general development throughout childhood and continuing into adulthood.

Impact of Retained Primary Reflexes

There are many issues both physical, emotional/psychological and behavioural that retained primary reflexes may contribute to. The follow are a few examples:

  • Eating Disorders
  • Depression
  • Tantrums/Anger Management Issues
  • Allergies
  • Hand-eye Co-ordination Issues
  • Co-ordination/Balance Issues
  • Vision Issues
  • Poor Concentration
  • Poor Posture
  • Fear of Heights
  • Disorganised
  • Vagueness
  • Spatial Awareness Issues

Primary Reflex Balancing and Kinesiology

Primary reflex balancing can be part of a general kinesiology session or as a session on it’s own. Kinesiologists use muscle-response testing to identify the reflex to balance and then use specific exercises to assist with integrating the reflex. These exercises are also given as homework to be followed at home.