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Last updateTue, 28 Oct 2014 9pm

Back Home Information Station Newborn Reflexes Present at Birth

Reflexes Present at Birth

  • Rooting-if baby’s cheek is stroked, baby will turn head and open his/her mouth in the direction of the stimulus. Present until approximately 4 months of age.
  • Sucking-automatically sucks on objects placed in mouth.
  • Grasping-of fingers (palmer grasp) and toes (plantar grasp) when stimulated. Palmer grasp is present until approximately 6 months of age while the plantar grasp can last until after baby’s first birthday.
  • Babinski-toes fan out in response to stroking of the foot. Present until 1 year of age.
  • Startle (also known as Moro)-startles at loud noises or with loss of support. Baby will extend arms and legs and then quickly bring them back together and cry. Present until approximately 3-6 months of life.
  • Stepping (walking)-when held up and soles of feet touch a surface, baby will appear to be taking steps. Present until approximately 2-3 months of life.
  • Tonic neck (fencer)-when head turns to one side, arm on that side will straighten, with the opposite arm bent up as if child is holding a fencing sword. Present until approximately 4 months of life.
  • Galant- when back is stroked, baby will turn towards the side that was stroked. Present until approximately 4-6 months.

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