Services: Reflex Integration
What are primitive reflexes?
Primitive reflexes are a set of involuntary responses originating from the most basic or primitive part of the brain: the brainstem. These reflexes are essential to brain development before birth and in the 2 years after birth.
With every reflexive movement, an infant creates a somatosensory experience. That’s when the body experiences pressure, texture, temperature and pain and sends a signal to the nervous system for processing. These reflexive movements serve a purpose in helping us to learn to process sensory information, and to further interact with the world around us through movement. This creates nerve connections that provide the foundation for developing higher cortical centers of the brain.
Why do active primitive reflexes matter?
For those who continue to have active primitive reflexes, daily learning and behavioral demands are more draining. While necessary for early neurodevelopment, primitive reflexes must be integrated or immature patterns will continue to be used by the toddler, child and adult. They learn to compensate but still have difficulties with:
- Speaking or non verbal communication
- Coordination and movement
- Stress & anxiety
These challenges occur when the natural cycle of primitive reflexes is disrupted for some reason. The reflexes remain active and the brain stem is constantly stimulated. This limits access to higher centers of the brain where individuals process information and control impulses. It’s important to understand that reflexes need to emerge, be utilized for a purpose and then integrate. At Thrive, we recreate movements that allow the brain to develop a stronger foundation.
Integrating primitive reflexes can be transformative. The remarkable neuroplasticity of the brain allows us to build a more efficient foundation using our movement-based program and other therapeutic modalities. It can help improve all aspects of an individual’s life.